South Africa Hosted A “Virtual BRICS Summit” On Gaza
Russian President Vladimir Putin attended the virtual summit
South Africa hosted an extraordinary virtual summit of the BRICS countries —Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa—including Russian President Vladimir Putin to discuss “the situation in Gaza and the Middle East.”
The summit was on Tuesday, November 21, to discuss the situation in Gaza and the Middle East
As the head of BRICS countries, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has called for “an extraordinary joint meeting” on Tuesday, November 21, to discuss the situation in Gaza and the Middle East.
Leaders from the MENA countries joined the summit
Leaders from Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran and the United Arab Emirates – who are all due to join the BRICS group in January 2024 – attended the meeting.
The UN Secretary-General António Guterres was there too and a joint statement released at the end of the summit
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres will also attend the meeting, at the end of which the leaders issued a “joint statement on the situation in the Middle East, with particular reference to Gaza.”
South Africa has always been a loud vocal of the Palestinian cause
South Africa has long been a vocal supporter of the Palestinian cause, with the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party often linking it to its own struggle against apartheid.
South Africa suspended its diplomatic relations with Israel and closed the Israeli embassy in Pretoria
Members of South Africa’s parliament voted on Tuesday, November 21, to suspend diplomatic relations with Israel and close the Israeli embassy in Pretoria until it agrees to a ceasefire in Gaza, condemning the Israeli regime’s “genocidal actions.”
South Africa joined four other countries on Friday in demanding for an International Criminal Court investigation into Israeli war crimes in Gaza.
The closed joint statement of the BRICS summit concluded the following:
- The final joined statement was very mild, calling Israel only to comply with international humanitarian law and accept “full, immediate, safe, unhindered, and sustained humanitarian access.” It also warned Israel not to try to force Palestinians out of Gaza.
- It further demanded that all illegally arrested civilians be released immediately and unconditionally.
- The BRICS group also called for an immediate and permanent humanitarian cease-fire in the Gaza Strip.
- The final statement stressed that only through peaceful methods, a just and sustainable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian issue Can be achieved.
Gaza deaths toll from Israeli attacks climbs to over 14000 Palestinian civilians, 75% of whom are women and children
Israel continues its ground and air assault on Gaza, which has so far killed over 14000 Palestinians, including at least 5,600 children and over 6000 civilians most of whom are children and women reported missing under the rubble.