President Cyril Ramaphosa says officials were working on an evacuation plan for South Africans who are trapped in the conflict between Israel and Palestine.

Ramaphosa, who was attending the National Executive Committee meeting of the ruling ANC party on Saturday, said they have also received calls from various countries in the Middle East to send humanitarian assistance to Gaza.

Hundreds of thousands of people in Gaza have been without water, food and electricity for almost a week since Israel started bombing Gaza. Israel also cut off the supply of fuel, water and electricity.

But Ramaphosa and the ANC NEC condemned the decision by the Israeli government to force 1.1 million people in northern Gaza to move to southern Gaza.

He said what was happening in Gaza amounted to genocide and the world must stand up for the Palestinians.

South Africa was willing to participate in any peace process to resolve the conflict between Israel and Palestine.

As you know this is an unfolding situation and it changes hour by hour. Our government agencies, our international relations department as well as our intelligence services and our defence intelligence are monitoring the situation on an ongoing basis,” said Ramaphosa.

“To this end we have called on the international community, the United Nations and all other concerned organisations that peace is restored in Palestine and that the Israeli government is directed at withdrawing this command of getting people out of northern part of Gaza because in the end it is going to amount to almost genocide as many people are going to die.

“As we speak now half-a-million people, who are Palestinians, have been displaced. They have been removed from their homes, they live in schools and other areas as well. This is the most tragic situation and almost dangerous situation that the people of Palestine have been exposed to,” said Ramaphosa.

He said humanitarian corridors must be opened to allow for the supply of food, water, fuel and other needs. Electricity must also be restored to the people of Gaza.

Ramaphosa said they were also concerned that the conflict may spill over into the Middle East and drag other countries in the region.

There were already conflicts in Africa and Ukraine, and the world cannot afford to have another conflict.

South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa Wears Palestinian Scarf, Pledges Solidarity


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