Israel’s Foreign Ministry said on Monday that it has recalled its ambassador to South Africa following the “latest statements from South Africa.”
This is coming after South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) party said on Thursday, that it would support a parliamentary motion calling for the Israeli embassy in South Africa to be closed.
South Africa which has been highly critical against Israel’s bombardments in Gaza, recalled its diplomats from Israel. Hamas fighters stormed southern Israel on October 7, sparking the devastating war in Gaza.
In a related news, the South African government called on the International Crime Court (ICC) to issue an arrest warrant for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by mid-December.
Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni said if the ICC did not do this, it would signal a “total failure” of global governance.
“The world cannot simply stand by and watch,” she said. Israel says it is defending itself following the 7 October attack by Hamas which saw 1,200 people killed and more than 200 taken hostage.
Although Israel said it is trying to reduce civilian casualties, Ms Ntshavheni said the Israeli government was trying to “clear most of Gaza of Palestinians and occupy it”.
South Africa, along with Bangladesh, Bolivia, Comoros and Djibouti, submitted a referral to the ICC to investigate whether war crimes and crimes against humanity have been committed in Gaza. South Africa has long been a vocal supporter of the Palestinian cause.