World Bulletin / News Desk
South Africa's ruling party on Thursday denounced Israel's ongoing onslaught on the Gaza Strip, urging South Africans to protest the Israeli attacks and show solidarity with the Palestinian people.
"The African National Congress (ANC) condemns in the strongest terms the barbaric attacks on the defenseless Palestinian people of Gaza," ANC Deputy Secretary-General Jessie Duarte said in a statement.
At least 81 Palestinians, including several women and children, have been killed in Israeli airstrikes since Monday.
According to Palestinian security sources, Israeli warplanes have conducted more than 770 airstrikes against targets in Gaza over the same period.
Israel says its military offensive – dubbed "Operation Protective Edge" – is aimed at ending rocket fire from Gaza.
"The state of Israel has turned the occupied territories of Palestine into permanent death camps," said the ANC.
"As we move towards the month of August and are reminded of the atrocities of Nazi Germany, surely we must ask the people of Israel has the term 'lest we forget' lost it meaning?"
South Africa's ruling party also condemned the "senseless" killing last month of three Israeli settlers in the West Bank.
"But for the state of Israel, the notion of 'an eye for an eye' has become perpetual massacre with merciless revenge, which has lasted for more than 60 years. It is time to stop the killing," it asserted.
Describing the Gaza Strip as "the world's largest open-air prison," the ANC demanded an end to the "illegal Israeli occupation and collective Israeli punishment of the Palestinians."
"The collective punishment and illegal siege of the Palestinian people of Gaza must immediately end," the party insisted.
The ANC went on to urge all South Africans, regardless of their ethnic and religious backgrounds, to protest against Israel's deadly offensive and show solidarity with the people of Gaza.
"Apartheid South Africa's wanton killing of our people during the 1980s led to its isolation; it would seem that Israel is taking a similar path of isolation by embarking on these attacks," it said.
"We are unequivocal in our support for the Palestinian people in their struggle for self-determination and unapologetic in our view that the Palestinians are the victims and the oppressed in the conflict with Israel," the ANC added.Last Mod: 10 Temmuz 2014, 17:55