Photo Credit: Google Maps
The former South African embassy in Ramat Gan, Israel, 2017

South Africa’s government recalled from Israel all of its diplomatic officials at its mission in Tel Aviv on Monday, condemning the IDF military operation to eradicate the murderous Hamas terrorist organization in Gaza following its invasion of southern Israel and massacre of some 1,400 Israeli citizens and foreign nationals on October 7.

The African nation of Chad made a similar decision, as have Colombia, Chile and Bolivia.


The South African government roundly condemned Israel’s bombing of military targets embedded within the civilian population in Gaza, calling it “a genocide”.

South Africa does not currently have an embassy in Israel; in March 2023, the South African parliament voted to downgrade the country’s embassy in Tel Aviv to a liaison office.

Likewise, the South African government is mulling the possibility of ejecting Israel’s Ambassador Eliav Belotsercovsky from the country.

“The position of the ambassador of Israel in South Africa is becoming very untenable,” said Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni.

“Cabinet has instructed Dirco (Department of International Relations and Cooperation — the foreign ministry of the South African government) to take necessary measures within the diplomatic challenges and protocols to deal with the conduct of the ambassador of Israel to South Africa,” Ntshavheni said.

“We leave it to Dirco to decide what will be done with the ambassador. He is a guest in our country and must conduct himself as a guest,” she said, without referencing remarks by the ambassador that were considered offensive.

In an earlier statement, Ntshavheni expressed South Africa’s “disappointment” with Israel’s decision to defend itself from the clear existential threat posed by Hamas.

“Cabinet is disappointed by the Israeli government’s refusal to respect international law and the UN resolutions with impunity. The humanitarian corridors remain closed due to the continued attacks of the Gaza Strip by the Israeli government, which increased the death toll to more than 9 500,” she said, mouthing the lies of Hamas.

In fact, the humanitarian corridors were blocked by Hamas, which has made every possible attempt to prevent Gaza residents from evacuating the northern sector for safety in the south, as they were urged to do by the Israeli military. Hamas uses its civilian population as human shields.

“The airstrikes in Gaza and the West Bank continue to attack schools, ambulances and civilians,” she said, without adding the information Hamas plants its military infrastructure in, around and even under civilian sites so as to maximize civilian casualties when the terrorists are attacked.

“As previously communicated, a genocide under the watch of the international community cannot be tolerated. Another holocaust in the history of humankind cannot be acceptable. Israel is threatening the stability of the global system by its conduct against the Palestinian people.”

The South African minister made no mention of the genocide perpetrated against Israeli civilians on October 7.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.