Mandela’s Grandson Denounces Israel on Ramallah Visit

YERUSHALAYIM -

Mandla Mandela, a member of the South African parliament and grandson of Nelson Mandela, denounced Israel as an “apartheid regime” during a visit to the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah.

Mandela, supporter of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, did not have Israeli officials on his itinerary, which runs through Wednesday.

An Israeli foreign ministry spokesperson said, “We have no information on the visit.”

During a joint press conference with PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah on Monday, Mandela said that what he saw reminded him of apartheid in South Africa, and he called for South Africa to cut all ties with Israel.

Mandla was also scheduled to meet with PA President Mahmoud Abbas and pay a visit to the mausoleum of arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat in Ramallah.

Near the mausoleum is an 18-foot-high, bronze statue of Nelson Mandela, who is famous among Palestinians for saying: “We know all too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.”

During a visit to Israel in 1999, the former South African president said, “I cannot conceive of Israel withdrawing if Arab states do not recognize Israel within secure borders.” But he also said “that talk of peace remains hollow if Israel continues to occupy Arab lands.”