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. 

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French labour union backs BDS

October 13, 2016
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General Confederation of Labour ‐   National Institute for Agricultural Research (CGT‐INRA)

Far from seeking a just and peaceful solution with the Palestinians, the State of Israel, through its successive governments, engages ever more in the violence of the occupation and colonisation and in the violation of human rights.

Faced with the State of Israel's impunity, with its violations of the law and with the collusion of the major powers, starting with that of our own government, CGT‐INRA decides to join the appeal launched in 2005 by 172 Palestinian civil‐society organisations for a campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against the State of Israel as long as it does not respect human rights in Palestine. Because we are firmy rooted in the camp of justice and peace, because our unionism has no borders, we resolve to act within the BDS France campaign in order to achieve a just and lasting peace, which requires:

‐  the end of the occupation and colonisation of Palestinian lands and the dismantlement of the Wall;

‐ the recognition of the fundamental right of the Arab citizens of Israel to absolute equality;

‐ the respect of the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their lands and their homes.

The 27th Congress of CGT‐INRA, held on 11, 12 and 13 October 2016 in Lyon, once again calls for an end to the prosecution of BDS activists in France. It also demands the abrogation of the Alliot‐Marie and Mercier circulars which curtail the freedom of expression and the exercise of peaceful activism.

October 13, 2016
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