AU justifies expulsion of Israeli delegation from summit
The African Union has justified the expulsion of the Israeli delegation from its weekend summit.
African Union chief, Moussa Faki Mahamat said Israel’s observer status with the organization had been suspended and the country was therefore not invited to its weekend summit.
AU commission head Moussa Faki Mahamat said on Sunday, a day after the Israeli delegation was expelled from the opening ceremony of the summit in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa: “Last year we discussed the question of Israel’s status as an observer in the African Union. Following these various discussions, the conference decided to set up an ad hoc committee of heads of state on the question, which means that the statute is suspended until this committee can deliberate. And so we did not invite Israeli officials to our summit,” he declared.
Moussa Faki Mahamat had granted this observer status to Israel in 2021.
The announcement had sparked an outcry throughout the pan-African bloc and protests in particular from Algeria and South Africa. A committee of heads of state was then set up last year to discuss the withdrawal of accreditation. The statute had been suspended while the committee was deliberating.
“We found that there is a personality who entered the room with a badge and, naturally, we asked him to leave the premises. We are in the process of making the necessary investigations because he does not reside here, he came from Israel and when never someone arrives here, he is invited, he is invited by the chairperson of the African Union Commission. The official was not invited” added Moussa Faki Mahamat.
Following Saturday’s incident that went viral on social media, the Israeli regime accused what it called a handful of extremist states like Algeria and South Africa of being behind this action.