South Africa says it is recalling all of its diplomats from Tel Aviv following Israel’s intense air strikes on Gaza on Sunday night.
The bombardment was one of Israel’s heaviest since the war began a month ago and according to Gaza City’s Al-Shifa hospital, about two hundred people were killed.
South Africa’s government, which has long been a vocal supporter of the Palestinian cause, staunchly condemned Israel on Monday with Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor telling a press conference that South Africa was withdrawing its diplomats.
He said: “We are… extremely concerned at the continued killing of children and innocent civilians in the Palestinian territories and we believe the nature of response by Israel has become one of collective punishment.
“We felt it important that we do signal the concern of South Africa while continuing to call for a comprehensive cessation [of hostilities].”