24 November 2020 Issue 257 - Give South Africa some space
Give South Africa some space says South Korea’s Ambassador
“I am very sad to be leaving South Africa and the African continent,’ said Dr Jong-Dae Park. His posting to South Africa as Ambassador of the Republic of Korea comes to an end as he returns home to take up a professorship as he retires from an illustrious career as a diplomat in the foreign-service for his country. He shares his thoughts, experiences and highlights of his Ambassadorship with Kirtan Bhana, Founding Editor of The Diplomatic Society in this exit interview.
"South Korea will always be grateful for the role played by South Africa and Ethiopia in supporting the war that enabled the country to acquire its independence, freedom and the democracy we enjoy today.” Ambassador Park was referring to the ideological conflict between 1950 and 1953 that led to the division of the Korean peninsula into North and South at the 38th parallel. A demilitarized zone still exists today as a grim reminder of a division which tore a nation apart.
Today South Korea is ranked among the top 10 economies of the world, rebuilding the country from one of the poorest in the aftermath of a devastating war, through effective use of the greatest resource, human capital. Empowering its people was the only solution for a country with a mountainous topography and minimal natural resources.
Welcoming new Heads of Mission to South Africa in the time of Covid
President Cyril Ramaphosa received Letters of Credence from 17 Ambassadors and High Commissioners-Designate who have been nominated by their governments to serve in diplomatic missions in South Africa at a credentials ceremony held at the Sefako Makgatho Presidential Guesthouse in Pretoria on 19 November 2020.
Egypt's New Ambassador has a bold continental vision to bolster ties between the two countries
Photo: Ahmed El Fadly, Ambassador of Egypt to South Africa and Mrs Habiba Abdelrazek with President Cyril Ramaphosa
A seasoned career diplomat, and an avid learner, with over two decades of professional experience under his belt, primarily in the field of regional and international security, El Fadly served in the Embassies of Egypt in Washington D.C. and Vienna, and was most recently, the Director of Disarmament Affairs and Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy. El Fadly also served as the Deputy Chief of Egypt’s Mission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where he prides himself on his extensive experience in dealing with African affairs, having headed the delegation of Egypt partaking in the AU Peace and Security Mission to Darfur in 2017, and his membership of Egyptian delegations to several AU Summits, Ministerial Meetings and Peace and Security Council Meetings.
A message from Mr. Håkan Juholt, Kingdom of Sweden
Moscow Declaration of the XII BRICS Summit adopted
On 17 November, Vladimir Putin, President of the Russian Federation, chaired the XII BRICS Summit under the theme “BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Shared Security and Innovative Growth” via videoconference.
The Summit saw the presence of President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro, Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi, President of the People’s Republic of China Xi Jinping and President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa.
A formal ball has been a tradition in celebrating the birthday of the United States Marine Corps since 1925. This year in Pretoria, due to restrictions imposed to curb the Covid-19 pandemic, the ball could not take place. However the pomp and pageantry was still present at the 245th birthday event hosted by Lana Marks, Ambassador of the United States to South Africa.
Dr Naledi Pandor, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation of South Africa with Heads of Mission and diplomats of ASEAN countries at the signing.
By Salman Al Farisi
South Africa and Indonesia share a long history, brought together by a common struggle against oppression. Confronted by Dutch invaders both our countries fought the viciousness of slavery, colonialism and apartheid.
History documents that since the mid-17th century, Indonesian slaves at the Cape fought shoulder-to-shoulder with other Asian and African slaves. There is also scholarly work showing how political prisoners from Indonesia may have inspired South Africans to fight against colonial and apartheid forces.