Open Secrets has challenged both the South African Presidency and the US government to make public details of the mysterious cargo of the Russian vessel Lady R which docked in Simon’s Town in December 2022.
A sanctioned Russian ship docking in South Africa’s most important naval base rightly set off alarm bells. What was onboarded and was it destined for the war zone in Ukraine or any hot conflict in Africa? We need evidence to substantiate facts — on all sides.
South Africa has a legal commitment to ensure that weapons are not sold to actors who seek to undermine human rights. Any weapons sales to Russia at this time not only undermine South Africa’s stated policy of neutrality in the Ukraine war but would also suggest allyship with a violator of international human rights.