South African Ambassador Returning
Pretoria sends back ambassador who was recalled following Gaza flotilla incident but still has demands.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 7/20/2010, 6:28 PM / Last Update: 7/20/2010, 6:23 PM
South Africa announced Tuesday that it was sending its ambassador back to Tel Aviv, seven weeks after he was recalled following the deadly clash between the IDF and armed Muslim attackers on the “Gaza flotilla.”
A Foreign Ministry statement in Pretoria noted that the IDF's probe of the incident had “identified mistakes” committed during the raid, but that South Africa still wanted another, international investigation, according to an AFP report. South Africa stated that it wants a “prompt, impartial, credible and transparent” investigation, “in line with UN recommendations."
However, it decided to send ambassador Ismail Coovadia back to Tel Aviv because of his “crucial role in monitoring developments in the region.”
Yossi Levi, who handles contacts with the Israeli press in the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, commended South Africa for the decision. “We express our pleasure at the return of the ambassador and believe that the important relationship with South Africa has thus returned to its natural course and good terms,” he said.