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Palestinians should be armed to protect themselves – Mandela

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Israel is being given carte blanche to do whatever it wants, the great-grandson of the late South African leader

The great-grandson of the late South African leader Nelson Mandela has called for the international community to support the Palestinian cause and arm the Palestinians to defend themselves against Israeli aggression.

Mayibuye Mandela, who is the co-founder and chairman of the Africa Rising Foundation, made the remarks in an interview with Middle East Eye on Tuesday, as Israel continued its deadly bombardment of the Gaza Strip.

Mandela said that the Palestinians were facing a similar situation as the black South Africans who fought against the apartheid regime and that they deserved the same solidarity and assistance.

“The international community must stand up and say enough is enough. We cannot allow Israel to continue to violate international law and human rights and get away with it,” he said.

He added that the Palestinians should be given the right to self-determination and sovereignty and that they should be armed to protect themselves from Israeli attacks.

“We have seen that peaceful protests do not work. We have seen that the international community does not care. So what is left for the Palestinians to do? They have to defend themselves by any means necessary,” he said.

Mandela also criticized the role of the United States and other Western countries in enabling Israel’s actions, saying that they were giving Israel “carte blanche to do whatever it wants”.

He said that the US was hypocritical for preaching democracy and human rights while supporting Israel’s occupation and oppression of the Palestinians.

He urged the African Union and other regional blocs to take a stronger stance against Israel and support the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which aims to pressure Israel to end its violations of international law.

He also called for the recognition of Palestine as a state and the implementation of the UN resolutions that call for the end of the occupation and the establishment of a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders.

Mandela said that he was inspired by his great-grandfather, who was a staunch supporter of the Palestinian cause and compared it to the struggle against apartheid.

He said that he visited Palestine in 2014 and witnessed the suffering and resilience of the Palestinian people.

He said that he felt a connection with them and that he wanted to continue his great-grandfather’s legacy of fighting for justice and freedom.

“I believe that Palestine is the moral issue of our time, just like apartheid was. And I believe that we have a duty to stand with the Palestinians and support their struggle,” he said.

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