African Union says Israel’s observer status from bloc is suspended

2023-02-21 18:54:43

The African Union has said that Israel’s observer status at the bloc was suspended which is why it was not invited to attend the weekend summit.

The news comes after Israeli ambassador Sharon Bar-li was removed from the African Union’s annual summit in Ethiopia on Saturday.

She attempted to attend the summit using a non-transferable invitation issued only to Israel’s ambassador to the African Union, Aleli Admasu.

Video circulating on social media showed guards escorting Bar-li out of the AU assembly hall in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.

“The status is suspended until such time as this committee can deliberate … and so we did not invite Israeli officials to our summit,” AU Commission chief Moussa Faki Mahamat told reporters on Sunday, adding that an investigation was being conducted into Saturday’s incident.

A spokesperson for Israel’s foreign ministry accused the AU of being taken hostage by a “small number of extremist states like Algeria and South Africa, which are driven by hatred and controlled by Iran”.

Amnesty International: Israel is an apartheid regime

Last year, UK-based Amnesty International said its investigation shows that Israel imposes a system of oppression and domination against Palestinians across all areas under its occupation.

Amnesty said this amounts to apartheid as prohibited in international law.

The term “apartheid” was originally used to refer to a political system in South Africa which explicitly enforced racial segregation, and the domination and oppression of whites over blacks.

Apartheid is a violation of public international law, a grave violation of internationally protected human rights, and a crime against humanity under international criminal law.


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