‘Permanently Banned’ – Africa’s Solidarity with Gaza Thwarts Decade-Long Israeli Efforts

37th Summit of the African Union. (Photo: via African Union Tw Page)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

“After a decade of diplomatic efforts and two years after the accreditation, Tel Aviv is now permanently banned from the institution,” Le Monde reported.

The African Union withdrew the status of observer member that Israel enjoyed within the organization, and thus Tel Aviv was permanently banned from the institution, the French newspaper Le Monde reported on Sunday.

“The war in the Gaza Strip has put an end” to this discussion, according to the report, written by Le Monde’s correspondent from Addis Ababa, Noé Hochet Bodin.

“The file related to Israel’s accreditation is closed,” the report quoted a senior African Union official as saying.

‘Brutal’ Gaza War Must End – African Union Calls for Intl. Investigation

Additionally, Ebba Kalondo, spokesman for the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, said that “Israel is not invited to attend the summit.”

“After a decade of diplomatic efforts and two years after the accreditation, Tel Aviv is now permanently banned from the institution,” the report stated.

Shifting Position

“Gaza is being completely annihilated and its people are deprived of all of their rights,” the Chairperson of the AU Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, said on Saturday, adding that he “condemns the Israeli operation (war on Gaza), which is unparalleled in the history of humanity.”

Faki went on to say that “the Palestinian people must enjoy their full freedom and their independent and sovereign state.”

Equally important, the African leader declared his total support for South Africa in its position, which calls on the International Court of Justice to order Israel to stop its genocide in Gaza. 

Ironically, it was Faki, who had, in 2022, granted Israel an observer membership status, though, reportedly, without consulting with members of Africa’s largest political body. 

‘Unparalleled in History’ – Head of African Union Shifts Position on Israel

Faki, this time around, however, seemed to have little interest in incorporating Israel into Africa, to the delight, of course, of the growing pro-Palestine constituency in the continent. 

The President of Comoros, Razali Ousmani, echoed Faki’s words and thanked South Africa for submitting a complaint to the International Court of Justice to expose “the genocide that Israel is committing before our eyes.”

Strong Influence

According to Le Monde, despite the permanent ban, the African continent is still divided on this subject and “Israel’s influence remains important.”

Indeed, South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor expressed her concern “about the presence of Israeli representatives at the headquarters of the African Union in recent days,” according to Le Monde.

Her remarks came after the Israeli ambassador to Ethiopia was seen inside the building, while Sharon Bar-li, Deputy Director General of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Foreign Affairs, reportedly held secret meetings in the Ethiopian capital. 

Red Carpet to Palestine

The African Union, however, publicly displayed solidarity to Palestine, rolling out “a red carpet for Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh, who received a long applause from all heads of states,” Le Monde reported. 

Moreover, the final statement of the 37th Summit of the African Union (AU) condemned the “brutal” Israel war and the use of excessive force against 2.2 million unarmed civilians.

‘Go Away’ – African Union Prevents Israeli Delegation from Entering Headquarters

According to Al-Jazeera, the statement called for an independent international investigation into Israeli violations of international humanitarian law in Gaza, and Israel’s use of internationally banned weapons to target hospitals and media institutions in the Strip.

The summit also reportedly urged Israel to respond to international calls for a permanent ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, comply with the decisions of the International Court of Justice to prevent genocide, and lift the unjust siege imposed on the Gaza Strip.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 29,092 Palestinians have been killed, and 69,028 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7.

Moreover, at least 7,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip. 

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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