ADL Praises Decision by South African Agency to Reject Tzipi Livni Arrest Warrant

New York, NY, January 24, 2011 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today welcomed a decision by South Africa's highest investigative body to reject a request for an arrest warrant for Tzipi Livni, Israel's former foreign minister, upon her visit to the country.

The announcement, from the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) headed by General Anwa Dramat, comes after two groups – the South Africa Media Network and the Palestinian Solidarity Alliance – tried to secure an arrest warrant for Livni when she planned to visit South Africa at the end of January.

"We are heartened by General Dramat's decision to refuse to allow these groups to secure a warrant for former Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni's arrest," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "This decision clearly shows South Africa's commitment to the rule of law and willingness to act responsibly to prevent an obvious injustice. Such efforts to arrest and demonize Israeli officials are counterproductive and preclude constructive relationships between countries."

Last week, ADL wrote to South Africa's Ambassador to the United States, Ebrahim Rasool, expressing concern about the request for an arrest warrant and asked that the South African government "clearly state that it is opposed to unwarranted legal activism of this type." 

Mr. Foxman said General Dramat's decision "should send a convincing message that the South African government will prevent all attempts by those who seek to misuse the legal process to promote their personal political views about Israel and her leaders."

The Anti-Defamation League was founded in 1913 to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all. Today it is the world’s leading organization combating anti-Semitism, exposing hate groups, training law enforcement on hate crimes, developing anti-bias education programs for students, countering cyber-hate and relentlessly pursuing equal rights for all.

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