South Africa – Israel Relations

Love Affair

The ‘romance’ between the pioneering Jews in Southern Africa and the State of Israel, goes back long before Israel’s independence in 1948. Stories reveal that while immigrant Jews from mostly Eastern Europe were living in tents in dusty dreary mining camps in Kimberley looking for diamonds and later prospecting for gold in Johannesburg during the late nineteenth century - and with hardly enough money to feed and house a family - they would still set aside every month “a few shillings” for the Jews in Ottoman Palestine. Struggling to eke out a living, they found it within themselves, to sacrifice for their fellow Jews struggling to build a Jewish Homeland. “What is my struggle next to the struggle of my People,” was a sentiment often expressed and that began the LINK between Israel and South Africa today.

Did you know?

67

Years of diplomatic relations

49%

Of all Middle East tourists to SA come from Israel

$265M

Goods exported to Israel

$75M

Goods imported from Israel