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Joint statement with SAJBD would betray Palestinian cause, says Muslim Judicial Council

Thousands of people recently took to the streets of Sea Point for a Palestine Solidarity picket. Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency (ANA)

Thousands of people recently took to the streets of Sea Point for a Palestine Solidarity picket. Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jun 2, 2021

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Cape Town - Issuing a joint statement with the South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) would ago against its stance on Israel and Palestine and would amount to a betrayal of the Palestinian cause, the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) said.

This comes after a request from the chief Rabbi, who is independent from the Cape SAJBD.

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In a statement to Anglican Archbishop Thabo Makgoba, the MJC’s first deputy president, Abdul Khaliq Allie, said: “The Palestinian cause is a dignified struggle that requires demonstrating the highest integrity and discipline.

“We have therefore reaffirmed our call on all peace-loving pro-Palestinian protesters to maintain the necessary discipline at all times irrespective of the amount of provocation and intimidation that may be encountered.”

He added: “The stance by members of the South African Jewish Board of Deputies, headed by Chief Rabbi Goldstein, is diametrically opposed to our moral position that most of the freedom-loving people have adopted in so far as it refers to condemning the violence and apartheid policies meted out against Muslim and Christian Palestinians on a daily basis by the apartheid regime in Israel.”

Cape South African Jewish Board of Deputies chairperson Tzvi Brivik said although reaching out to the MJC came from the chief Rabbi, they would fully endorse initiatives by all South African leaders to try and de-escalate the tension in the country as a result of the conflict.

“Hostile rhetoric has unfortunately resulted in polarisation between fellow South Africans, and we are seeing intimidation and threats popping up in all facets of society, including on social media, in universities and in the business environment.

“We are currently dealing with incidents of harassment and cyber-bullying, some of which have been addressed with social media companies, while unfortunately the more serious incidents have required that criminal cases be initiated,” said Brivik.

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