Israel-Iran Conflict: Impunity For Unlawful Acts Fuelling Ear, Injustice, South Africa Says

The Government of South Africa is gravely concerned at developments in the Middle East following the retaliatory action by the Islamic Republic of Iran against Israel following Israel’s attacks on Iran’s Embassy in Damascus, Syria, on 1 April 2024.

As the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres has stated, there is a “very real danger of a devastating region-wide escalation”.

In this context, South Africa emphasises that all parties must exercise the utmost restraint and avoid any act that would escalate tensions in a particularly fragile region.

South Africa has continuously stressed that irrespective of whether states believe that their use of force is lawful, it is never wise to resort to war as inevitably, it is ordinary people who bear the brunt of conflict.

The international community and the United Nations Security Council, in particular, must act in the pursuit of sustainable and just peace for all people.

While we turn our attention to these developments, let us not forget that the war in Gaza continues with devastating humanitarian consequences for its people. An immediate ceasefire and urgent humanitarian access are required.

The proliferation of global conflicts will continue if we, as the international community, do not commit ourselves to the ending of war and the establishment of conditions under which justice and respect for international law are maintained.

As long as there is impunity for unlawful acts, war and injustice will continue.

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