Faizel Patel, Radio Islam News, 2015-03-02
The 11th annual international Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) will be held in South Africa between the 2nd and 8th March 2015.
IAW is an annual international series of events that raises awareness of Israel’s apartheid policies toward the indigenous Palestinians and serves to garner support for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel campaign (which seeks to bring an end to Israel’s apartheid policies and violations of international law.
UK: February 23-28
US: Feb 26-March 12
Europe: March 2-9
Palestine: March 1-8
South Africa: March 2-8
Ireland: March 7-14
Canada: March 9-14
South America: March
The campaign was officially launched at Liliesleaf Farm in Johannesburg which was once the nerve centre of the liberation movement and a place of refuge for its leaders, and today is one of South Africa’s foremost, award-winning heritage sites, where the journey to democracy in South Africa is honoured.
The launch was attended by Shaka Sisulu (grandson of Walter and Albertina Sisulu), Aaliyah Kathrada (niece of Ahmed Kathrada), Obakeng Chikane (Reverand Frank Chikane), Roshan Dadoo (daughter of Dr Yusuf Dadoo), Johann Naude (son of Reverand Dr Beyers Nadue) and other children of former anti-apartheid activists and icons.
In a statement at the launch, the children said: “As children, grandchildren and relatives of Anti-Apartheid stalwarts, veterans of our country’s freedom struggle, we have a responsibility to carry forward the spirit of those who came before us. As children who live in a free South Africa we carry a responsibility to those in the international community who contributed towards our liberation.”
“As children of a larger human family we have a responsibility to ensure that children can live in a world where it is safe and okay to simply be a child. Regardless if they are black or white, regardless of their religion, race or nationality and regardless if they are an Israeli or Palestinian child.”
Previously the IAW campaign in South Africa was endorsed by over 65 South African organisations including the African National Congress (ANC), the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU ] and South African Council of Churches (SACC) amongst others.
Organizers are expecting the number of organizations, churches, unions and others groups endorsing and participating in IAW to hit the 100 mark this year.
As part of the contribution towards IAW, Radio Islam will also be interviewing many renowned guests.
In 1963, Hendrik Verwoerd, the architect of Apartheid, said: “Israel, like South Africa, is an Apartheid State”.
Since then there have been several South Africans who have compared Apartheid South Africa to current-day Israel, including: Ahmed Kathrada, Denis Goldberg, Kader Asmal, Blade Nzimande, Zwelinzima Vavi and Winnie Mandela.
IAW South Africa organisers have also announced that Palestinian human rights activist and spoken word artist Rafeef Ziadah will tour South Africa as part of IAW 2015.
Ziadah is an active member of the Palestinian Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS South Africa) and in particular working on the growing cultural boycott of Israel.
Rafeef has received international acclaim for her heart wrenching spoken-word poetry, which includes “We Teach Life, Sir” and and “Shades of Anger”