EXECUTIVE SUMMARY OF SOUTH AFRICA’S IMPLEMENTATION AND PROTECTION OF PALESTINIAN SOLIDARITY RIGHTS (IPPSRA) BILL

Release Date: 21 December 2018 (Updated 04-12-2020)

IPPSRA is an advocacy campaign in support of a parliamentary citizens bill. The first of its kind with the principal objective of achieving the legalisation for the implementation and Protection and Promotion of Palestinian Solidarity Rights in South Africa.

How will IPPSRA be applied?

Broadly, with far reaching legal ramifications affecting various public sectors involving government, organs of state, private individuals, companies, civil society, academic and educational institutions, religious associations and the sporting fraternity.

IPPSRA shall be applied in a responsible manner with due evaluation of the various adverse state impacts and mitigation of risk to the Republic across all sectors affected by its provisions.

What are the IPPSRA objectives?

 IPPSRA has amongst its objectives the creation of an enabling legislative framework which deals with inter alia

  • The cessation of diplomatic relations between the Republic of South Africa and Israel;
  • The implementation of boycotts and the imposition of economic trade divestments and sanctions;
  • Strengthening customary universal jurisdiction by means of development and enhancement of principles of complementarity;
  • This includes the process of incorporating international criminal law and lawfare mechanisms into the domestic jurisdictional legal framework in the midst of biased and intractable accountable international institutions;
  • Monitoring, surveillance and screening of South African nationals and citizens and/or Israeli nationals and citizens via immigration authorities who serve in the Israeli Defence Force (IDF);
  • The holding of perpetrators accountable including Israeli state leaders in the Knesset in terms of South Africa’s Implementation of the International Criminal Court Act 27 of 2002 (ICC Act 27 of 2002), that is SA’s ratification of the Rome Statute, rather than affording such perpetrators immunity protection in terms of the Diplomatic Immunities and Privileges Act 37 of 2001;
  • Expansion on boycotts, disengagement and non – collaboration of cultural, religious, educational, scientific, academic institutional, environmental, water and/or sanitation management, including any other sustainable state institutionalised boycott campaign in partnership with government, affected stakeholders and civil society;
  • Penalties and enforcement proceedings;
  • The principle objective is the conversion of political rhetoric into a legal enabling framework, including such rhetoric of the incumbent state executive in support for the freedom of the people of Palestine;
  • Adhering to the constitutionality of IPPSRA provisions and the separation of powers between the legislative, executive and judiciary;
  • The creation of an enforceable, accountable and responsible human rights based Palestinian Solidarity Bill for enactment with due reflection of our own colonial history and apartheid legacy, whilst South Africa taking the lead in solidarity legislation; and
  • The realisation for all Palestinians of a free, democratic and constitutional society entrenched with a justiciable Bill of Rights.

The words of Nelson Mandela, must resonate during these precarious times for Palestinians living under apartheid, belligerent occupation and settler colonialism:

We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians.”

The author’s work entails a product of the identification of solidarity focus areas in order to strengthen the “international intifada” extending over a decade in the commitment towards the utilisation of lawfare mechanisms, since the first Gaza War in 2008-2009 (‘Cast Lead’), by both strengthening and expanding on lawfare advocacy tools in Palestinian solidarity activities, after having been exposed to and being involved in various legal cases and advocacy campaigns for Palestine both locally and internationally.

Lawfare, like BDS is a means of peaceful conflict resolution. Lawfare was adopted as a legitimate policy tool at the NGO Forum of the UN World Conference against Racism in Durban 2001. Since then Palestinian NGO’s around the world are effectively deploying this tactic for the first time, where the Israeli government is facing serious allegations of war crimes. This can be mainly attributed to the 22- day Israeli Defence Force (IDF) bombing campaign in Gaza in December 2008 and January 2009, under the auspices, “Operation Cast Lead”.[1]

According to Iqbal Jassat, executive member of the Media Review Network, a Palestinian human rights stalwart is quoted In Why Israel? [2] on lawfare:

“This international role played by civil societies all over the world is viewed as a hostile                                               development that could undermine the Zionist regimes legitimacy.”

IPPSRA underscores the urgent and important need to codify customary principles of universal jurisdiction and legislate South Africa’s first co-operative governance state support for the lawful and just human rights cause of Palestine in achieving peace, equality, freedom and justice.

IPPSRA also serves as an important precedent for Palestinian solidarity both locally and internationally, whereby both its content and legal provisos may be adapted to a particular jurisdictions constitutional and domestic legal framework and also serve to supplement such common law principles entrenched in customary universal jurisdiction.

It is an imperative objective to construct a legally enabling framework which converts the political rhetoric of South Africa’s governing political party, the African National Congress (the ANC) and/or other such political parties into tangible support for the international Palestinian Solidarity Intifada. Former ANC political resolutions concerning Palestine are also provided in the appendices.

The pre-amble and its appendices are provided as a historical record, which includes insight into the factual matrix of the complex geo-political Middle East conflict.

Furthermore, it also provides the pretext for the legal foundations of IPPSRA informed by decades of sustained human rights violations and abominable crimes perpetrated by the Israeli, Zionist regime where culpability is incontrovertible.

The IPPSRA advocacy campaign is intended to navigate through a malaise of challenges and processes whilst intending to achieve broad based advocacy support across all sectors of society.

IPPSRA must be driven by the passion of sincere activism, national and international Palestinian solidarity.

The IPPSRA National Commission to be established shall be mandated with all matters relating to the advancement of the IPPSRA advocacy campaign with its strategic partners including the collaboration and navigation required in any Parliamentary processes which would unfold.

Author’s Expression of Gratitude

I wish to express my wholehearted gratitude to the countless inspiring activists I have met across the globe, dedicated professionals and the broader Palestinian solidarity movement locally and internationally for their support and assistance rendered in the IPPSRA initiative.

I wish to also thank the many contributors, including comrades at the PSC Cape Town who have supported this advocacy campaign wholeheartedly. Lest also not forgetting the many individuals from various national solidarity movements who support the broader vision of the IPPSRA initiative and campaign.

The unflinching support of my family and inspiration of my late parents Sarabibi and Ebrahim Essop Patel, my father through the many years he served as an educationist and pioneer in social welfare activism in the Lenasia community and beyond which provided me with the foundational roots to resonate the anti-apartheid struggle in my country of birth with the Palestinian struggle for freedom.

The IPPSRA Bill is dedicated to the Palestinian people and to all oppressed peoples of the world where constructive Lawfare and human rights advocacy may through peaceful means, beneficially alter their situation and provide them with a world filled with peace, tolerance, justice and freedom.

“The fight for freedom must go on until it is won, until our country is free and happy and peaceful as part of the community of man, we cannot rest – Oliver Tambo”

Author: Attorney Ziyaad Ebrahim Patel (Author)

(South African International Human Rights & Trade Lawyer, Lawfare activist and advocate for a free Palestine)

 An attorney who, under section 4(2) of the Right of Appearance in Courts Act 62 of 1995, has the right of appearance in the Supreme (High) Court in the Republic of South Africa

 C/O: Ziyaad E Patel Attorneys

www.zepattorneys.co.za

Johannesburg, South Africa

Tel No. + 27 11 782 – 2644

Mobile No. + 27 83 309 5238

E-mail: info@zepattorneys.co.za

[1] S. Dadoo & F. Osman, Why Israel? – The anatomy of Zionist apartheid – A South African perspective, CH 60: The War on Lawfare, p 552

[2] Why Israel? Op. Cit. CH 60, p 578