The Global South Response brings together notable figures, intellectuals, policy makers, civil society leaders and experts from Africa, Latin America and Asia in a joint effort to oppose Israel’s land theft and apartheid. The declaration issued came in response to Israel’s threat of de jure annexation of large parts of the occupied Palestinian West Bank, a flagrant violation of international law such as the prohibition of conquest of territory by force.
While international attention has focused on Israel’s de jure annexation, Israel already de facto exercises complete military and administrative control over this land, denying the most basic rights to the indigenous Palestinian families residing there.
Israel’s violent theft and annexation of Palestinian land is an integral part of Israel’s apartheid practices over the Palestinian people as a whole.
Palestinian civil society has called “on all States to comply with [their] obligations by adopting effective countermeasures, including sanctions, to end Israel’s unlawful acquisition of Palestinian territory through use of force, its regime of apartheid, and its denial of our inalienable right to self-determination.” These include a ban of arms trade and military-security cooperation with Israel, suspension of free-trade agreements with Israel, prohibition of all business with the illegal Israeli settlements and holding individuals and corporate actors responsible for war crimes/crimes against humanity in the context of Israel’s regime of illegal occupation and apartheid.
The Global South Response answers this call and is based on the Global South’s “long history of struggle for self-determination and national sovereignty, and against colonialism, apartheid and the racist ideologies that were used to justify it”.
It aims to coordinate efforts at national levels to raise these demands and in front of the United Nations to re-activate its mechanisms to combat apartheid. These were developed to end the scourge of apartheid South Africa, and must now effectively end Israel’s “21st century apartheid”.
It calls for:
- Adopting a resolution at the United Nations General Assembly which renews the call for, and provides the means to implement, targeted and lawful sanctions on Israel, including a military embargo, as a countermeasure to stop its de facto and de jure annexation of occupied Palestinian territories and its other egregious violations of international law.
- Promoting the activation of the UN Special Committee on Apartheid to address Israel’s regime over the indigenous people of Palestine.
- Guaranteeing the effectiveness and regular updating of the UN database of companies involved in business with Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise.
- Supporting the International Criminal Court’s probe into Israel’s war crimes and crimes against humanity perpetrated in the occupied Palestinian territories.
The Global South Response has been initiated by the South Africa BDS Coalition in the same place where an apartheid system was defeated with similar strategies. It aims to strengthen the support Palestinianshave received over decades from Africa, Asia and Latin America within the framework of the United Nations, and build an alliance for freedom, justice and equality in the face of the Trump-Israel agenda to dismantle or undermine the most basic principles of our global cooperation for world peace and justice, particularly in these critical times.
Palestinian civil society has made it a prime demand the re-activation of the UN Special Committee on Apartheid stating “Now is the time for serious accountability measures, not just for the sake of defending Palestinian rights under international law, but crucially to safeguard the very credibility of and respect for international law itself.”