People stage a massive protest against the U.S. decision to declare Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, in Cape Town, South Africa, on Dec. 13, 2017. Thousands of South Africans gathered before Parliament on Wednesday in protest against the U.S. decision to declare Jerusalem as the Israeli capital. (Xinhua/Linda Yee)
by Zenzile Khoisan
CAPE TOWN, Dec. 13 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of South Africans gathered before Parliament on Wednesday in protest against the U.S. decision to declare Jerusalem as the Israeli capital.
The protest, organized by a broad coalition of structures affiliated with the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and civil organizations, culminated in a demand that the ANC pass a resolution at its upcoming national congress, authorizing the government to end its diplomatic relations with Israel.
Protest organizers said the call for urgent action against Israel was prompted by U.S. President Donald Trump's announcement last week that his country would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and would accordingly move its embassy to Jerusalem.
The decision has drawn condemnation and sparked a number of protests across the world.
"The time has arrived to take leadership and to close the Israeli embassy," Abdul Ghaliet Ibrahim of the South African Muslim Judicial Council told the crowd.
ANC Western Cape Regional Secretary Faeiz Jacobs said the ANC will address the issue of Palestine when it convenes its national congress on December 16-20 in Johannesburg.
"The partnership and relationship with Palestine is unshakeable and the ANC is consistent, so we will drive the agenda to close the Israeli Embassy," Jacobs told the crowd.
He said that as the Western Cape delegation, they will go to the conference and make sure that the resolution be passed.