South African Government commitment to Human Rights and Democracy with its failure to publicly call for the Resignation of Mr Mubarak of Egypt before 11 February 2011

National Assembly

For Oral Reply

Question No 12 published in Internal Questions Paper 2 of 2011

Mr S Mokgalapa (DA) to ask the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation:

(1) Whether the Government informed Mr Mubarak prior to his departure on 11 February 2011 that he had to resign; if so, when; if not,

(2) How does the Government reconcile its commitment to human rights and democracy with its failure to publicly call for Mr Mubarak’s resignation before 11 February 2011?


The Department of International Relations and Cooperation monitored the situation which unfolded in Egypt on January 25th 2011 and the next 17 days with interest and received regular reports on the situation from its Mission in Cairo. The Department did not issue any further statements until 11 February 2011, welcoming the resignation of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, as a victory to the will of the people of Egypt.

The Government at no stage informed the former Egyptian President that he should resign. As a sovereign state, South Africa does not interfere in internal affairs of other sovereign states.

In reconciling our commitment to human rights and democracy, South Africa issued a statement on 31 January 2011 which called on the “Government and people of Egypt to seek a speedy and peaceful resolution to the current crisis. The resolution of this crisis will without doubt pave the way for a new era in Egypt. The statement issued adheres to South Africa’s commitment to human rights and democracy and is in line with the international principle of non-interference in the international affairs of sovereign state.

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