Faizel Patel, Radio Islam News - 08-04-2019
Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane has reiterated his call for a two state solution in Palestine, slamming the South African government’s decision not to replace its ambassador to Israel and downgrade its Israeli embassy to a liaison office.
EWN reports Maimane made the comment during an address to the Jewish community at the Sandton Shul on Sunday.
Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) Minister Lindiwe Sisulu last week announced that South Africa's ambassador to Israel Sisa Ngombane will not be replaced.
Ngombane was recalled from Tel Aviv in May 2018, following the killings of a number of protesting Palestinians by the Israeli army in Gaza.
Maimane told Radio Islam last week he met with both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Palestinian Authority when he visited Israel and discussed the possibility of a two state solution.
According EWN Maimane says a two state solution in Palestine can’t be reached if decisions like the one made by Dirco continue elsewhere.
“I believe the solution between Israel and Palestine must be one of a two-state solution and therefore, it is unthinkable to me why the South African government would move ahead with the removal of the ambassador in Israel. I think frankly, it is not the way we must operate in the diplomatic world, it is certainly not the way for us to lean towards a two-state solution.”
Maimane has come under fire for taking a photo with Netanyahu, especially from the Muslim community who see the DA as a party that has not taken a clear stance on the Palestinian issue.