Netanyahu tells diplomats to fight South African warrants
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered the Foreign Ministry to work against what he terms “provocations” by the South African government, following reports that Pretoria was issuing arrest warrants for four former IDF commanders over the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident.
This despite denials in South Africa that any such warrants have been issued.
“The prime minister instructed the Foreign Ministry to work decisively against the provocative and ugly attempt to use the South African judicial system to advance a hostile and illegitimate stance,” his office says in a statement. “Our embassy in Pretoria is in contact with the South African police to annul the effort.”
Earlier in the day, BDS activists in south Africa said police had issued warrants over the 2010 incident, in which 10 Turks died in a clash with troops who boarded a ship trying to break the Gaza naval blockade.
However, a South African police spokesperson denied that any warrants had been issued.
“There is no truth to this. No arrest warrants have been issued for any of the people mentioned‚” he said. “We have checked with our Interpol and our Crimes Against The State officials and they deny any such thing.”
An Israeli diplomatic source also told The Times of Israel earlier that South Africa said there was no truth to the claims that the warrants had been issued, describing the story as a plant by pro-Palestinian activists.
— Raphael Ahren