The South African government reacted cautiously to the news that al-Qaeda founder and 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden was killed by US special forces in Pakistan on Monday.
In a statement issued by the Department of International Relations and Co-operation on Monday, the government said it had “noted the news of the passing of Mr Osama bin Laden”.
“South Africa reconfirms the commitment to the system of global governance of multilateralism. Our resolve to support peace, security and development in the world remains.
“We call upon all countries across the world to co-operate in stemming the demon of terrorism, in all its manifestations, out of global politics.”
But department spokesman Clayson Monyela said on Monday this could be seen as a “holding statement” and that the government was still “assessing the situation as it develops”.
He said the department would “probably say more on the subject” in the coming days.
SA Muslim Judicial Council spokesman Shuaib Appleby condemned Bin Laden’s killing, adding that his organisation also condemned the September 2001 attacks in the US.
“The idea is that extrajudicial killing is totally condemned by Islam. A person must be duly tried, with a court deciding on a punishment if the person is found to be guilty. We hope that with (Bin Laden’s) death, the kinds of ideas that Muslims globally were subjected to - the Islamophobia - and being associated with terrorism will cease with immediate effect,” he said.
ANC spokesman Jackson Mthembu said the ANC “cannot be part of the violent resolution of problems”, adding that the party condemned the killing of any person.
“Peace cannot be achieved though violence anywhere in the world. We find no joy in any death, even of people who call themselves terrorists,” he said.
Young Communist League secretary Buti Manamela was more critical of US actions, saying the killing of Bin Laden was an eye-opener to the “brutality” of the US.
“Our view is that all these things seek to prove to the entire world the brutality of the US. They claim to be the champion of peace and democracy but they are nothing but invaders and their anti-terrorism campaign is the greatest cover-up of their own terrorism. Through their president (Barack) Obama, they are the worst animal fighting in human skin,” he said.
The Media Review Network, a South African organisation with the self-declared aim of promoting understanding of Muslims and Islam, said it remained “concerned about the legality of the US-led ‘war on terror’” which had “unleashed abominable human rights violations, notably torture, rendition and detention without trial - all in pursuit of Bin Laden, al-Qaeda, the Taliban and Saddam Hussein, blamed for the New York outrage of 9/11”.
It asked, in light of reports that Bin Laden was living with family members and without armed guards, why he had not been “captured and afforded an opportunity to defend himself in an open court of law”.
“In addition, we are dismayed with scenes of celebration in America and the insensitive pronouncements of joy made by Israeli leaders and others in Europe,” it added.
There have been persistent suggestions that South Africa offers al-Qaeda operatives a relatively safe access route to other parts of the continent, and possibly a base of operations for some of its cells. And intercontinental security operations have found some operatives using fraudulently obtained South African travel documents to move around the globe.
In 2004, al-Qaeda operatives arrested in London were in possession of South African passports.
In 2006, the UN Security Council named two South Africans, Farhad Ahmed Dockrat from Erasmia near Pretoria, and Junaid Ismail Dockrat, a dentist from Mayfair, Joburg, as “international terror suspects”.
Both men have denied US claims that they had links with al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Pakistan.
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Conspiracy 2011, wrote
I still dont believe this story.It cant be true.The USA has entered into a agreement with Osama and Al-Qaeda,to end this mayhem and myths.They staged a death andor killed someone in Pakistan,whom they claim is Osama just to erase or enhance terrorism threat.We should be wary of these stunts,this is USA we are talking about,they want to claim best inteligence and secrete service as usual.For your information guys,Osama is alive and living in New York,he has been given a new look by US plasitic surgens.The threat is dead but Osama is alive they killed a scape-goat,no DNA test were done andor body was thrown into the sea.Osama sponsored Obama's previous election campaign and Hilary Clinton knew about it.
@Mondli...One mans terrorist is another mans freedom fighter. Depends on which side of the gun you are.
Sonono Mshengu, wrote
The reponse by the ANC is nothing but a joke. was Mthembu drunk or what ?.I mean how can the ANC say they "cannot be part of the violent resolution of problems", when only a few weeks ago police shot and killed an innocent protestor, obvioulsy followng a "shot to kill" instruction from the Police top brass who are all senior ANc members ?. This to me is a joke, the ANC must shut-up on international relations issues and concentrate on the corruption they are promoting in all spheres of government.
where's the proof Obama? the only dead terrorist i see is jeff dunham's aghmed. if you killed the man i want pictures. you're just trying to justify the millions you've spent on your war.
ANC Hypocrites, wrote
The ANC should rather shut up. The ANC has the blood of thousands on its hands and yet it chooses to spew the rubbish that it did regarding the death of Bin Laden. This is nothing more than one terrorist group sympathising with another. Don't kid yourself ANC your opinion matters little in international politics anyway
You people saying he should have been put to trial are stupid! I mean seriously! Are you going to rock up at his front door and ring the door bell and politely ask him to stand trial? He was never going to allow himself to be "arrested". Even if capturing him alive was a possibility it proves difficult to do when he is shooting at you. Your only 2 choices in the matter are shoot him dead or let him continue running Al-Qaeda operations.
Osama deserved to die no question. America went onto foreign soil to "EXECUTE" him. Perhaps they can come clean up SA with its GENOCIDAL maniac
Was this even Osama that thay killed??? From what i see THAT picture came of an internet blog in 2010!!!!!! and he had already been reported dead by many news networks in 2001!!! So what is the US trying to pull???? The Picture smells of photoshop and lies ! more lies from the US of LIES! Thay may be able to lie to their dum citizens but at least some of us here in SA are smart!
I find it ironic that the ANC is decrying the resolution of issues through violence when it was waging its own campaign of terror in South Africa to ensure the freedom of its people. One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter, eh? It's all about perspective.
Well done America !!!! Love your work.
Graham F, wrote
Quite a number of correspondants must also believe that Muammar Gadaffi should also be allowed to murder his own people who disagree with him and do not have elections to get him out
Those who condemn and hate the US should rather get rid of everything that is American like their Explorer software.
Osama probably killed himself, the USA had egg on the face. Imagine if they captured him alive, the information they could have got.
One question: is the world a better since the demise of Bin Laden? I envy people for their comments. Has it anything to do with any of us? To give a comment as a few here, you must either be beyond reproach yourself or a genius who has full comprehension of how the world works!
@innocent Khumalo ...my friend you are not so innocent afterall.u speak of the deaths of innocent people..what about the innocent people of Iraq palestine afghanistan libya pakistan and so on ..Is a slow painful death to Obama the right sentence.In my opinion Osama bin laden is a great man ..he defied the western oppression and stood up against them and shook their world...Who you are so courages to do what he did yet you would sit in your chair,probably with your heater on,and judge this man who had given his life to what he stood for...and you being a black south african should know better
How the F**k can we top The royal wedding.The british has beaten us.
@South African, wrote
I thought our cops already dish out this sort of justice. Andries Tatane is one of 3 that have died in the past 3 weeks. Who knows, you maybe next
its shocking that people still belive that Osama was responsible for 911....wake up people....learn the truth that the disgusting US dont want you to know about....why did they pay the families of the dead out to close the case and 101 other reasons that the US planned the bombing themselves. The US are the terrorists themselves and use other groups to create fear and show what I good job they are doing prorecting their people. Hogwash!!! All a set up for something big that they are planning and need an aliby for...so they can say well this was the backlash for killing Osama....all planned, but a stupid cover up story!!!
Catch 22: Should they not have buried him, that would have been against the observance of Islamic law.Now that hes buried, you ask 'why the haste?'. Saddam was captured alive and tried, but after hanging, was buried within 48hrs in observance.So, the nuisance was killed, finish and klaar!
Werner , wrote
Just as brutal as Eugene terblanches murderers!!!!