Press Release on Behalf of the South African Union for Progressive Judaism (SAUPJ) and the South African Association of Progressive Rabbis (SAAPR)
20 Oct 2015
It has been reported in the media that Hamas representatives will meet with a “Progressive Jewish Group” during their visit to South Africa. We have no knowledge of the source of this notice and have no dealings or intentions of meeting with Hamas.
We call on Hamas to distance themselves from anti-Semitism and terrorand to remove from their Charter the aim of killing Jews.
Rabbi Greg Alexander
SA Association of Progressive Rabbis
SA Union for Progressive Judaism
SAZF condemns Hamas visit to South Africa in the strongest terms possible
During these past few weeks of barbaric violence targeting Israel, Hamas has enthusiastically endorsed the cold-blooded murder of Israeli civilians and instigated dozens of lethal attacks against them. The SA Zionist Federation (SAZF) condemns in the strongest terms possible the fact that a delegation representing the Hamas Central Committee will be visiting South Africa as the honoured guests of the ruling party.
Contrary to what is claimed, the ideology, values, aims and strategies of Hamas are diametrically opposed to the principles of the ANC, as embodied in the Freedom Charter. At its recent National General Council, the ANC reaffirmed its support for a negotiated, two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Hamas, by contrast, does not support, nor has it ever supported, the creation of an independent Palestinian state co-existing in peace alongside Israel. Instead, its charter explicitly stipulates that no negotiated settlement is possible in the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians with Jihad being the only solution. Simply speaking, Hamas wishes to destroy Israel altogether and seeks to establish an Islamist dictatorship in its place.
Hamas, no less than Boko Haram and Al Shabab, is an Islamist extremist movement committed to extending the global Islamic Caliphate through radical violent means to every inch of Israel and beyond. In the kind of state it envisages, there would be no room for the human values of democracy, freedom of religion and gender equality.
Unless the purpose of the ANC meeting with Hamas is aimed at radically moderating and aligning Hamas with the position of the South African Government then any such engagement will simply prove both futile and counter-productive to genuine efforts aimed at the peaceful resolution of the conflict.
Ben Swartz Avrom Krengel
Chairman SA Zionist Federation President SA Zionist Federation