Promise director Kosminsky and 'Israel apartheid'

By Marcus Dysch, May 12, 2011

Peter Kosminsky, the director who made the controversial series The Promise, has attacked the Israeli government, comparing its policies to those of apartheid South Africa.

Mr Kosminsky, who was widely criticised following the broadcast of the films about British mandate Palestine, likened Israeli actions to the bantustan policies in South Africa 60 years ago.

He told the Observer: "I would describe [the situation in Israel] as apartheid. I was not seeking to reflect this view in The Promise, but if you ask me personally, then I do.

"What is happening in Israel is akin to the concept of separate development. It reminds me of the bantustan policy of the South African government."

During the South African apartheid regime, bantustan territories were set aside as pseudo-national homelands for the black population. Mr Kosminsky revealed that he is to produce a film about Nelson Mandela's early life and role in the ANC's military wing.

He said he was "beaten, but unbowed" by the attacks which followed The Promise, adding: "It is probably the thing I am most proud of. I knew it would raise hackles with some people, but the thing I have found most difficult, as a Jew, is the suggestion that the criticism of Israel is racist."

Last updated: 3:39pm, May 12 2011