South Africa’s Ramaphosa renews call for ceasefire in Gaza and Palestinian state | Political news

by MMC
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In his annual state of the nation address, President Ramaphosa addressed domestic issues and Israel’s war on Gaza.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has reaffirmed his country’s commitment to helping secure a ceasefire in the war on Gaza and a possible two-state solution between Israel and Palestine, during his annual speech on the state of the nation.

Speaking to lawmakers at Cape Town City Hall on Thursday, the president said that “guided by the fundamental principle of human rights and freedom”, South Africa had championed the Palestinian cause ” to prevent further death and destruction in Gaza.”

South Africa has filed a complaint with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague, accusing Israel of genocide in Gaza. Last month, the court issued a provisional decisionaffirming that it has jurisdiction to hear the case and ordering Israel to take all measures to prevent acts of genocide.

“We welcomed the decision of the International Court of Justice that Israel must take all measures in its power to prevent acts of genocide against the Palestinians,” Ramaphosa said in his speech.

“We condemn the killing of civilians on all sides and call on all parties involved in the conflict to engage in a peace process that will result in a two-state solution,” he added.

Al Jazeera’s Fahmida Miller, reporting from Johannesburg after the speech, said South Africa considers its case before the ICJ so far “a success.”

“Ramaphosa said that there is really no conflict in any part of the world that is intractable and cannot be resolved through negotiations, and this is what he said when addressing the issue of war against Gaza and saying that South Africa was firmly behind the Palestinian people…and that they would use all diplomatic and legal methods to continue this fight and bring a ceasefire and a two-state solution to this region” , added our correspondent.

30 years of democracy

This year is a key election year for South Africa. The African National Congress (ANC), Ramaphosa’s ruling party, has ruled the country since the first democratic elections after the end of apartheid in 1994.

Although historically dominant, the ANC is struggling in the polls, and many analysts say it will for the first time achieve less than the 50 percent parliamentary majority it achieved in previous elections.

The third-largest opposition party, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), also boycotted the state of the nation address on Thursday after its leader and vice president were suspended from parliament for taking stormed the stage during last year’s speech.

Ramaphosa, 71, used his speech to highlight how far the country has come since the end of apartheid.

“Ramaphosa took the opportunity to talk about some of the progress that has been made over the last 30 years,” Miller said. “The ANC is going through a very difficult time. South Africa’s ruling party, many would say, has failed millions of South Africans to the extent that little has changed, but the ANC would say something different.

“Ultimately (Ramaphosa) used his speech to try to highlight what the ruling party has done over the last three decades and to try to get South Africans to go to the polls and try to somehow renew their hope in the party. try to resolve some of the difficulties that the party has encountered,” she added.

Ramaphosa also spoke about his government’s measures to address the country’s protracted energy crisis. “We are convinced that the worst is behind us and that the end of load shedding is finally at hand,” he said, using the local term for power outages.

He also promised the creation of thousands of jobs, saying his government “has made significant progress on measures to grow the economy, create jobs and reduce poverty.”

Without naming him, Ramaphosa also attacked his predecessor Jacob Zuma, 81, who was appointed last month. suspended of the ruling party after supporting a dissident party that threatens to take votes away from the ANC.

Listing the challenges South Africa has faced in recent decades, Ramaphosa said “perhaps the greatest damage” to the nation was inflicted by the period of massive corruption that marked Zuma’s rule .

“For a decade, individuals at the highest levels of government conspired with private individuals to take over and redirect state-owned enterprises, law enforcement and other public institutions,” he said.

“Billions of rands meant to meet the needs of ordinary South Africans have been stolen. »

South Africans are expected to go to the polls between May and August this year.

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