(MENAFN) On Wednesday, the government of South Africa condemned the latest incidents of violence Israeli armed forces carried out in the Gaza Strip that resulted on 17 martyrs.
In a statement, Foreign Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said actions of the Israeli armed forces present another obstacle to a permanent resolution to the conflict.
The South African government also called for an independent inquiry into the deaths of the Palestinians.
"South Africa reiterates its view that the Israeli Defense Force must withdraw from the Gaza Strip and bring to an end the violent and destructive incursions into Palestinian territories," Sisulu said.
"South Africa aligns itself with those members of the United Nations calling for an independent inquiry into the killings, with a view to holding to account those who are responsible," the statement said.
Tens of thousands of demonstrators converged Friday on the Gaza Strip's 45-kilometer-long (28-mile) eastern border with Israel to demand their right to return to their ancestral homes in historical Palestine. In anticipation of the mass demonstrations, Israel deployed thousands of troops along the border. In addition to the 17 martyrs, the attacks injured nearly 1,500 victims