Mandela’s grandson slams African Union observer status for ‘apartheid Israel’
The grandson of South African anti-apartheid revolutionary and philanthropist Nelson Mandela has joined a growing chorus of opposition to a recent decision by the African Union Commission to grant “apartheid Israel” observer status at the continental body.
Zwelivelile Mandela, who is a parliament member for the ruling African National Congress, slammed the movie as "fatally flawed".
“We cannot normalize relations with apartheid Israel while it continuously rides roughshod over the human rights of the Palestinians, incarcerates, tortures and maims innocent civilians, acts with impunity and violates international law as if it is a law unto itself,” Mandela said.
He said the decision was “fatally flawed” and AU Commission chief Moussa Faki Mahamat “acted unilaterally and without consulting member states or executive members of the African Union.”
Mandela urged the South African government to cut all diplomatic ties with the Zionist regime and expel its ambassador, stressing that “apartheid Israel” has repeatedly refused to be part of a “genuine peace process.”
Mandela condemned some South African nationals for serving in the Israeli military, saying the government must try them for “war crimes and violating the country’s Foreign Military Assistance Act.”
On July 22, Israel attained observer status at the AU after nearly 20 years of lobbying.
In April, US-based Human Rights Watch accused Israel of crimes against humanity by pursing policies of "apartheid" and persecution against Palestinians.
The word apartheid is often associated with South Africa. Apartheid was a system of institutionalized racial segregation that existed in South Africa from 1948 until the early 1990s.
The system was characterized by an authoritarian political culture based on white supremacy, which ensured that South Africa was dominated politically, socially, and economically by the nation's minority white population.
The African Union’s recent decision to grant Israel an observer status in the bloc threatens the continent’s unity organization.
At least a dozen member states have, so far, formally objected to last month’s decision by the AU Commission chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat, to accept the credentials of Israel’s ambassador to Ethiopia, Aleli Admasu.
Mahamat’s decision effectively granted Israel observer status at the AU – a position that Israel has been desperately pursuing for almost 20 years.
As a result of these objections, the issue will now be included on the agenda of the next AU executive council meeting in October. Many more countries are expected to verbally object at that meeting.