“Mobilise for the boycott of Israeli goods.” – Former President Thabo Mbeki 


Former President Thabo Mbeki has said recalling ambassadors from South Africa and Israel would not solve the issues underpinning the Gaza conflict. Instead he has called for a mass mobilisation to boycott against Israeli goods. Mbeki made the comments during the orientation of a new intake of students at the Thabo Mbeki African Leadership Institute (TMALI) at the University of South Africa on Monday.

During the event, a student asked Mbeki whether he thought South Africa was being “too diplomatic” with Israel and whether government should cut diplomatic ties with the country over the attacks on Gaza.

Mbeki disagreed saying that in order to find a lasting peace, the South African government - which has already been in talks with the Palestinian Authority as well as the Palestinian political parties Fatah and Hamas – now needed to engage the Israeli government.

However, he said it is up to the South African people to heed calls to boycott Israeli goods and divest from Israeli companies.

“I think that call is correct,” he said, adding “We need to mobilise so that indeed Israel does pay a price for the position that it is taking.”.

You can read the full transcript of his response below.


  1. It is important to understand that politicians talking to other politicians will come up with a particular solution, and they will believe that it is the right and only thing to do, and President Mbeki clearly operates within that framework of thinking. How SA can delude itself into thinking it can play a significant mediation role is beyond me….but some people enjoy that kind of delusion. Civil society groups in Palestine however have described the SA government position as illogical and support the calls by civil society groups in South Africa to have the Israeli ambassador sent home and the South African ambassador recalled.

  2. Yes, I believe that Woolworths are right – the ANC should declare war on the monster called apartheid wherever this monster raises its ugly head. Go on ANC, show that u r not enslaved to the Zionist Nazis and throw out, no imprison all illegal occupiers of Palestine who are in our country and all supporters of this devilish lot.


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