HomeNewsSA to summon US ambassador | after allegations that SA provided arms...

SA to summon US ambassador | after allegations that SA provided arms to Russia


SA to summon US ambassador | after allegations that SA provided arms to Russia

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) is anticipated to reprimand US ambassador to SA Reuben Brigety for now not following suited diplomatic channels to categorical his country’s worries that SA furnished palms to Russia.

“Dirco will nowadays demarche the USA Ambassador to South Africa following his remarks yesterday. We’ll problem a precise declaration after the meeting,” Dirco spokesperson Clayson Monyela stated on Friday.

He noted that International Relations and Cooperation Minister Naledi Pandor would speak to her US counterpart, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, also on Friday, to express SA’s displeasure.

This comes after Brigety engaged South African media on Thursday and expressed his country’s concerns that SA provided weapons and ammunition to Russia.

Brigety said America was convinced that SA, despite the fact that it claimed it took a non-aligned stance on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, had supplied arms to Vladimir Putin’s army.

“Among the things we noted was the docking of the cargo ship in the Simon’s Town naval base between 6th to 8th December, 2022, which we are confident uploaded weapons and ammunition onto that vessel in Simon’s Town as it made its way back to Russia,” the ambassador said.

Monyela noted that the National Conventional Arms Control Committee had no record of an approved arms sale by the state to Russia related to the period/incident in question.

“We, therefore, welcome the inquiry established by HE President Cyril Ramaphosa to establish the facts and role players. If any crimes were committed, the law will take its course,” he said.

The Presidency said on Thursday that an independent inquiry would be held into the allegations.

On Friday, Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni distanced the SA government from the allegations.

Ntshavheni said:

There was no official authorisation of weapons that were sold to Russia and Ukraine.
Those overseeing the vessel’s arrival on local shores could detail what “cargo it took and brought in”, Ntshavheni told talk radio 702.

Ntshavheni said the inquiry was specifically meant to reveal why the vessel arrived in South Africa and that it was not an admission of guilt.

“We have been provided information that it was here. But given we are going to undertake an inquiry, we cannot come to you now and say this is whatever. Because I don’t want to go and testify on issues that have got nothing to do with me.”
Through a media statement, Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse CEO Wayne Duvenage expressed concerns over the government’s lack of transparency in the matter.

“Allegations of armament supplies to Russia, a country that is in a war of aggression against Ukraine, has brought South Africa very close to a chain of events that will spark significant economic hardship for our nation.

“The inexplicable lack of transparency and information about what was loaded onto the Russian ship Lady R, which docked in Simonstown for a few days in December 2022, is extremely concerning not only to South Africa’s largest trading partners but also to millions of citizens who care about our position on the Russia-Ukraine war.

“The activities currently unfolding, including the recent landing of a Russian military aircraft at the Waterkloof air force base, send a clear signal that the ruling party is somehow dependent on Russian favours and is prepared to compromise the state,” Duvenage said.

SA to summon US ambassador | after allegations that SA provided arms to Russia

Latest stories


Leave a Reply