South Africa expresses concern regarding the kidnapping of three teenagers in Israel

20 June 2014

The South African Government would like to express its concern about the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers that were on their way home after attending school. South Africa condemns the kidnapping for whatever reason possible in the strongest possible terms and more so if vulnerable groups such as children and women are involved. The South African Government calls on the perpetrators of this heinous act to release the teenagers immediately and unharmed.

The South African Government reiterates its condemnation of all forms and manner of terrorism. South Africa believes that terrorism, in any form and from whichever quarter, cannot be condoned. The South African Government also calls upon all parties involved to exercise restraint, including a halt to the arbitrary arrest of Palestinian citizens and the use of collective punishment of Palestinians and the disturbance of their social and economic rights.

South Africa furthermore urges both the Israeli and Palestinian authorities to cooperate and focus on the core issue at hand, which is the recovery of the three kidnapped Israeli teenagers. South Africa believes that this unfortunate event should not be used from whatever quarter to cast aspersions on the legitimate existence of the Unity Government in Palestine, whose advent has been wholly welcomed by the members of the international community.

The South African Government is convinced that the recent events should spur all the parties to recommit to the peace process and restart the negotiations.

South Africa enjoys bilateral relations with Israel and Palestine, and will continue to monitor the unfolding developments with keen interest.

Enquiries: Mr. Clayson Monyela spokesperson for DIRCO, at 082 884 5974.
ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

OR Tambo Building

460 Soutpansberg Road
Rietondale
Pretoria
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