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

London council votes to Dump Veolia and support BDS

February 9, 2011
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Tower Hamlets council in London has become the second UK local authority to pass a motion to exclude Veolia from local procurement contracts over its complicity with Israeli violations of international law.

The motion, which was moved by councillor Harun Miah of the Respect Party, was passed at a full meeting of Tower Hamlets council on February 2.

The motion requests that the Mayor of Tower Hamlets writes to Veolia to explain the council's determination not to work with Veol

Tower Hamlets council in London has become the second UK local authority to pass a motion to exclude Veolia from local procurement contracts over its complicity with Israeli violations of international law.

The motion, which was moved by councillor Harun Miah of the Respect Party, was passed at a full meeting of Tower Hamlets council on February 2.

The motion requests that the Mayor of Tower Hamlets writes to Veolia to explain the council's determination not to work with Veolia in the future.

Elsewhere in the UK, Swansea council passed a motion to exclude Veolia from public contracts last year and Edinburgh, Portsmouth, Richmond and West Midlands councils have all excluded Veolia from public procurement processes following pressure from campaigners for Palestinian rights.

The motion also calls on the council to "do everything in its power to support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against the pariah state of Israel".

Marrickville Council in Australia and several small municipalities in Spain are among other local councils to have also passed motions in support of BDS.

 

February 9, 2011
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