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. 

BNC Statement

Land Day: Celebrate Resistance and Intensify BDS

On March 30, Palestinians will commemorate Land day, a day in 1976 when Israeli military forces shot and killed six young Palestinian citizens of Israel. These brave youth were among thousands protesting the Israeli government’s expropriation of Palestinian land. Today, we continue to celebrate Palestinian resistance to Israel’s ongoing land expropriation, colonization, occupation and apartheid.

Thirty-seven years after the first Land Day demonstrations, Israel continues its expropriation and colonization of Palestinian land.

On March 30, Palestinians will commemorate Land day, a day in 1976 when Israeli military forces shot and killed six young Palestinian citizens of Israel. These brave youth were among thousands protesting the Israeli government’s expropriation of Palestinian land. Today, we continue to celebrate Palestinian resistance to Israel’s ongoing land expropriation, colonization, occupation and apartheid.

Thirty-seven years after the first Land Day demonstrations, Israel continues its expropriation and colonization of Palestinian land. Israel continues to expand its illegal settlements in occupied Palestinian territory, forcing Palestinians from their land. Palestinians also face dispossession and displacement inside Israel.

For international supporters of the Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice and equality, Land Day is an opportunity to develop campaigns for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel, particularly campaigns targeting the Jewish National Fund, Israeli agribusinesses and companies operating in illegal Israeli settlements, all of which play a vital role in the continued theft of Palestinian land.

The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) invites people of conscience across the world to join us in marking land day by highlighting BDS as an effective form of solidarity with the Palestinian struggle.

At a time when Israel is facing unprecedented levels of pressure over its continued colonization of Palestinian land and quickly losing the international support upon which it depends, let us work together to intensify our collective efforts to hold Israel and its supporters accountable.

BDS National Committee

If you are planning BDS activities to mark Land Day, please send in the details to info@BDSmovement.net

 


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