‘SAfrica hate speech ruling bans ANC heritage’
Johannesburg: The youth wing of South
Africa's ruling party accused judges of banning the ANC's
anti-apartheid heritage on Monday after its leader was convicted
of hate speech for singing a controversial anthem.
Spokesmen from the African National Congress youth league
said they will consult their lawyers on how to proceed after
the decision barred their embattled leader, Julius Malema,
from singing an anti-apartheid struggle song known as "dubula
ibhunu," loosely translated as "shoot the white farmer".
"The decisions that have been delivered today have banned
majority of the ANC songs, the heritage of the ANC and the
struggle of the people of the Republic of South Africa," the
youth league's secretary general, Sindiso Magaqa, told
supporters outside the equality court in Johannesburg.
"It's a hard-hitting judgement that has wider
implications on the constitution and the future of this
Some 100 supporters broke out singing the song after his
remarks, in violation of the judge's ruling.
The crowd was far smaller than the throngs that flocked
to the courthouse when Malema, who had sparked controversy
with his public singing of the song, testified in the hearing.
Malema was not present for Monday's ruling.
Youth league spokesman Floyd Shivambu had told
journalists before the verdict that the group planned to
appeal the ruling if it went against Malema.
But after the judgement, he said only, "The response is
going to be given after we have consulted with the lawyers and
the ANC, because it's ANC songs that have been banned by this
Syrian assets frozen by Swiss reach 45 mn francs
Geneva: The amount of Syrian assets frozen
by Switzerland has now reached 45 million francs (37.3 million
euros, USD 51 million), Bern said on Monday.
"This is a total for all sanctions against Syria, whether
they be individuals or companies" and is up from 27 million
francs in mid-August, a spokeswoman for the economy ministry
"The number could get higher if the sanctions are widened
to include more people, companies or groups," she said.
Switzerland in August widened sanctions against Syrian
President Bashar al-Assad's regime, adding 12 individuals to a
list of key players under financial embargo and travel
Assad and other members of his regime were already placed
under sanctions in May, for their "involvement in the
repression against demonstrators."
Earlier today, the United Nations human rights chief said
that at least 2,600 people have been killed in the unrest in
Syria since popular protests first broke out in mid-March.