Jewish Board angered by Ebrahim comments

The board said deputy minister Ebrahim Ebrahim’s comments were “polarising and discriminatory”.

Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Mr Ebrahim Ebrahim with United Kingdom (UK) Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) responsible for Africa, Mr Henry Bellingham during their meeting. Picture: GCIS

JOHANNESBURG - The Jewish Board of Deputies on Tuesday reacted with anger to Deputy International Relations Minister Ebrahim Ebrahim's call discouraging South Africans from visiting Israel.

The board said the minister's statements were "polarising and discriminatory".

But Ebrahim said he was merely discouraging South Africans from visiting the country.

"We are not preventing them. The decision [to travel] is up to the individual," he said.

The African National Congress (ANC) has come under pressure to do more to fight for Palestine's independence.

Some ruling party members feel that the ANC has softened its stance on the issue since it came into power in 1994.

The conflict between Israel and Palestine was recently discussed at a meeting of the ANC's National Executive Committee.