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160 Lawyers demand US investigate corruption claims against South Africa – Israel News

A group of 160 lawyers, led by the Israel Law Center – Shurat HaDin, have issued a call to US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, the Justice Department and Congressional leaders urging an investigation of South African leaders.  In a letter sent today, the lawyers call upon American authorities to investigate members of the African National Congress Party (ANC), the party that holds a majority of seats in the National Assembly and also leads the South African government, under the Magnitsky Act for participating “in acts of significant corruption involving bribery.”

The letter further alleges that officials accepted bribes from Iran which were intended to cover ANC debts, in return for which party members agreed to pursue the case in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) blaming Israel for commiting genocide in Gaza.

The letter reveals a series of events that began in October 2023, shortly after the outbreak of the war, when South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor travelled to Iran to meet with the President of the Republic to discuss the Israel-Hamas war.  Less than two months later in December, South Africa had filed the complaint against Israel in the ICJ.  In January, despite well-known crippling financial difficulties within the ANC, the party surprisingly announced that its finances had been stablized.

In the letter to American authorities, the lawyers write, “this change of economic fortune coincided with the South African government’s lodging a complaint in the ICJ. This sequence of events strongly suggests that the ANC party’s financial woes were resolved by Iran as a quid pro quo for South Africa’s anti-Israel complaint,” and that the ANC leadership has engaged, “in the corrupt practice of accepting a bribe from Iran in exchange for serving as a diplomatic proxy for Iran against Israel which constitutes a violation of the relevant articles in the Magnitsky Act”.

The Act, passed in 2012, allows for the imposition of governmental sanctions against foreign individuals who have committed human rights abuses or been involved in significant corruption. Such sanctions may include the freezing of the perpetrators’ assets and may also limit their travelling internationally.

“We are now lifting the veil on the slanderous ‘genocide’ case against Israel brought by South Africa, which turns out to be nothing more than a paid puppet of the Iranian regime” said Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, founder and President of Shurat HaDin Israel Law Center. “The cynical and political use of one of the most important international conventions, which was inspired by the Jewish Holocaust, by antisemites and corrupted officials who are led by pure greed, cannot – and must not – remain unanswered.”

The more than 160 lawyers who signed the letter are urging the White House, Attorney General and US Congress to investigate how the ANC mysteriously got out of debt, what deal was made with Iran, and why the ANC government is so driven to support Hamas, a radical Islamic terrorist group whose violence and antisemitism goes against everything the late ANC leader Nelson Mandela had stood for. Hearings against Israel in the ICJ are expected to continue this week





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