Palestinian BNC Mourns Loss of Anti-Apartheid Icon Ahmed Kathrada

March 28, 2017, Occupied Palestine —The Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) has heard with great sadness the news of Comrade Ahmed Kathrada’s passing. Mr. Kathrada, born to an Indian Muslim family, was the most prominent Asian South African in the movement to end apartheid, the system of racial discrimination, segregation and white dominance that existed in South Africa until it was defeated in 1994.

Comrade Kathrada was also an active and consistent supporter of the Palestinian struggle for freedom. He visited Palestine, and saw the apartheid system we endure for himself. He said when in Palestine: "In our short stay here we have seen and heard enough to conclude that Apartheid has been reborn here. In its reborn form it is however worse than its predecessor. Even during the worst days of Apartheid we did not have walls to divide and control people, we also did not have separate roads for separate races, and we did not have the system of checkpoints that exist here."

The Foundation which bears his name engages in activities in support of Israeli Apartheid Week, which aims to raise awareness of Israel's apartheid policies towards Palestinians. It also supports the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights, believing that this is the way to bring an end to Israel's apartheid policies and violations of international law. 

Kathrada’s own long imprisonment — 26 years and 3 months — alongside the anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela and his lifelong struggle against apartheid and injustice are an example to all Palestinians that integrity and perseverance will lead to justice and freedom.

The BDS movement is working to increase international civil society and government support for the Palestinian struggle for justice. We were honored to count Comrade Kathrada as a supporter of our struggle and remain inspired by his life.

We send out our condolences to his family, friends, comrades and all South Africans during these difficult days.

The Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) is the largest coalition in Palestinian civil society. It leads and supports the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. 

In the News

Cemex excluded from Nordea’s investment portfolio due to extraction of Palestinian natural resources

Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) and the Norwegian Union of Municipal and General Employees (NUMGE) applaud Nordea’s decision to exclude Cemex from its investment portfolio due to the company’s extraction of non-renewable natural resources from occupied Palestinian territory

Cemex excluded from Nordea’s investment portfolio due to extraction of Palestinian natural resourceshttp://www.npaid.org/var/ezflow_site/storage/images/news/2013/ceme

Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) and the Norwegian Union of Municipal and General Employees (NUMGE) applaud Nordea’s decision to exclude Cemex from its investment portfolio due to the company’s extraction of non-renewable natural resources from occupied Palestinian territory

Cemex excluded from Nordea’s investment portfolio due to extraction of Palestinian natural resources

Israel’s extraction of non-renewable natural resources from the occupied West Bank provides profit to the Israeli quarrying and constructions industry, while undermining the interests of the local Palestinian population.

Norwegian People’s Aid and the Norwegian Union of Municipal and General Employees have previously urged Nordea to exclude Cemex from its investment portfolio. In this decision, Nordea shows that it takes social responsibility seriously. The NPA and NUMGE hope other banks and investors will follow Nordea’s lead and divest from Cemex.»says Liv Tørres, General Secretary in the NPA.

HeidelbergCement is another multinational company that extracts non-renewable natural resources from occupied Palestinian territory. Cemex and HeidelbergCement are depleting Palestinian natural reserves of stone and gravel. Many Norwegian banks and investors, including the Government Pension Fund, have investments in both HeidelbergCement and Cemex.

"HeidelbergCement and Cemex are making a profit from pillaging Palestinian natural resources. Companies who show a lack of respect for fundamental Human Rights and International Conventions should face consequences. Norwegian authorities, banks and investors need to renounce this activity, and divest from both companies.” Says Stein Guldbrandsen, member of the Working Committee in NUMGE.

Norwegian People’s Aid and the Norwegian Union of Municipal and General Employees collaborate on a project examining Norwegian ties to the Israeli occupation. The report, “Dangerous Liaisons: Norwegian ties to the Israeli Occupation”, was published in Norwegian in May 2012. The report demonstrates how Norwegian authorities and companies, through financial investments and trade, are involved in activities that contribute to Israel’s breaches of international law and human rights. The full report is available in English here:http://www.npaid.org/Media/20_Files/Om-oss/Annual-reports/Dangerous-liaisons

http://www.npaid.org/News/2013/Cemex-excluded-from-Nordea-s-investment-portfolio-due-to-extraction-of-Palestinian-natural-resources


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