South African Government Status on the Sentiment by President
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran regarding Israel
QUESTION NO: 1753
PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL
QUESTION PAPER NO 38 OF 4 NOVEMBER 2005
MR DHM GIBSON (DA) TO ASK
THE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS:
(1) Whether the Government agrees with
the sentiment recently expressed by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that
Israel should be wiped off the map; if not, why not; if so, what steps will the
Government take to convey its displeasure to the Iranian Government;
Whether the increasingly belligerent attitude of the Iranian government constitutes
a threat to peace and stability; if not, why not; if so, what steps will be taken
to counter this threat?
(1) No. The Government
does not agree with the sentiments expressed by the President of Iran. We concur
with the views expressed by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, who reminded
UN member states on 27 October 2005 that Israel is a long-standing member of the
United Nations with the same rights and obligations as every other member. Under
the UN Charter, all members have undertaken to refrain from the threat or use
of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State.
The Government of South Africa will be addressing its concerns with the Government
of Iran during bilateral discussions.
(2) No. The Government of South Africa
believes that Iran has an important and constructive role to play both regionally
and internationally and will continue to engage its Government in that context.