South Africa invited the Palestinian Authority prime minister for what would be the Hamas member’s first state visit to a non-Muslim country. The Associated Press reported that South African Intelligence Minister Ronnie Kasrils extended the invitation to Ismail Haniyeh at a joint news conference Thursday in Gaza. Kasrils, a Jewish lawmaker who is a vehement critic of Israel and what he recently called its “fascist-style brutality,” called on the international community to lift its embargo of the Palestinian Authority. Western countries have stopped direct aid to the Palestinian Authority since Hamas, a terrorist group, took power last year, funneling the money instead to nongovernmental organizations and directly to P.A. employees.No date was set for the visit but Haniyeh accepted the invitation, saying he hoped to meet former South African President Nelson Mandela while there.
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