South Africa

SAJBD urges SA govt to be even-handed in response to Israel-Palestine conflict

JOHANNESBURG - The South African Jewish Board of Deputies and the South African Zionist Federation has called on the government to be even-handed in its response to the situation in Palestine.

Israel has carried out numerous airstrikes in Gaza, while Palestinian militants have fired multiple rocket barrages at Tel Aviv and the southern city of Beersheba.

In Gaza, a multi-story residential building collapsed after Israel warned its occupants in advance to evacuate, and another was heavily damaged.

Reports said that around 50 people have been killed in Gaza since the violence escalated on Monday, while six people have been killed in Israel.

In Cape Town, a pro-Palestine march was led to Parliament on Wednesday, with many calling for sanctions against Israel and the government to do more to show support for the people of Palestine.

READ: Pro-Palestine demonstrators in CT call for sanctions against Israel

The South African Jewish Board of Deputies has given a word of caution for those taking sides in South Africa.

Spokesperson Zev Krengel: "This is a conflict that is emotive to both of us but it is not our conflict, it's a conflict on another continent and it's a conflict we feel we want to see the end of violence and end of conflict on both sides."

Meanwhile, Islamic Relief South Africa said that it was outraged at the fatalities in Gaza over the past 48 hours.

The organisation's Muneeb Abu Ghazaleh: "Despite the bloodshed and destruction happening now that attracted attention, the main problem is the protracted occupation, blockade, deprivation of basic internationally agreed-upon human rights, mainly of children, of women, of young people, of all people."

WATCH: SA protesters march in solidarity with Palestinians after uptick in Middle East conflict

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