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South Africa withdraws diplomats from Israel over Gaza violence 

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South Africa withdraws diplomats from Israel over Gaza violence

The South African government has decided to withdraw all of its diplomats from Israel in response to the escalating violence in Gaza.

The move is reportedly meant to “signal” South Africa’s dismay at the ongoing killing of children and innocent civilians in the Palestinian territories.

Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor said that Israel’s reaction has become one of collective punishment, prompting the decision to withdraw the diplomats.

READ ALSO: Gaza faces dire humanitarian crisis amid ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict – UN

The conflict in Gaza has worsened over the past month with Hamas militants launching an attack on Israel.

This has resulted in a high number of casualties on both sides, mostly civilians. South Africa, a longtime ally of the Palestinian cause, has taken a firm stance on the issue, often comparing it to its own struggle against apartheid.

The withdrawal of diplomats is seen as a normal practice, allowing them to give a full briefing on the situation to the South African government.

Based on the briefing, the government will then determine if it can offer any assistance or if a continued relationship with Israel can be maintained.

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