Image by [Al Arabiya]
Johannesburg – After the weekend’s March at Zoo Lake in Johannesburg, where thousands of South Africans demonstrated solidarity with Palestinians, various Palestinian solidarity groups organised a subsequent event scheduled for December 5. This display of support will lead Palestinian advocates to the Union Buildings.
Matthew Parks, the COSATU Parliamentary Coordinator, emphasised in an interview with Salaamedia, the demonstration aims to highlight the atrocities, crimes, and human rights abuses perpetrated by the Israeli regime. The objective is to urge global communities to increase pressure on their governments, calling for a ceasefire and further negotiations.
“South Africa has always believed that all conflicts need to be resolved through peaceful negotiations.”
The Lack of Negotiations
Over the course of 75 years of occupation marked by brutality, displacement, and violence against Palestinians, global institutions and leaders have endeavoured to find viable solutions to end the conflict. Unfortunately, these efforts have not translated into concrete and lasting outcomes, as the Israeli government does not indicate a genuine interest in coexisting with the Palestinians.
In addressing the ongoing war in Gaza and the persistent violence and land seizures in other Palestinian areas not under Hamas control, Parks emphasises the heightened importance of negotiations.
Despite the inherent challenges, he contends the actions and dialogue of world leaders, politicians, and international institutions have, in many instances, worsened the situation. Their support for actions which align with genocide has significantly complicated the prospect of meaningful engagement.
“The cycle of killing each other, bombing each other and slaughtering each other is not going to resolve anything. It’s just going to perpetuate, and people like we’re seeing right now in the Gaza Strip are going to pay the price. Why should children have to be bombed and killed when this is a failure of politicians to negotiate?”
More Pressure on World Governments Needed
Given the precision and scale of Israel’s bombardment in the Gaza Strip and the resulting casualties following the “pause”, it seems the terrorist Israeli military’s focus extends beyond targeting just Hamas. Their actions appear determined to impact an entire generation of Palestinians.
Around the world and on social media, people continue to organise marches advocating for a ceasefire and an end to the occupation. Despite these efforts, citizens in countries supporting Israel militarily and financially find their calls for intervention often ignored by their leaders.
Therefore, Parks encourages people not to lose hope and to increase pressure on their governments, whether at the national or local level, emphasising that prioritising negotiations is the only way to put an end to the Palestinian massacres and their overall genocide.
“We hope the pressure can help force, not just people in Israel and Palestine but the international community too, and to put pressure on their leadership to say, look this is enough now … How many more people need to die? Surely, it’s time to accept that the only solution is to negotiate.”