This is exactly the opposite of what was expected from a country that owes much of its liberty to the struggle for human rights. What makes the volte-face even more remarkable, if not cynical, is that the African National Congress (ANC) uses the very same arguments as the apartheid government regarding the applicability of the Westphalian noninterference principle (Article 2 par 7) of the UN Charter.
After the success of the ANC’s universal human rights campaign against apartheid, it was logical to expect that it would make international morality the lodestar of its future foreign policy.
That was precisely what former president Nelson Mandela did. He proclaimed: “SA’s future foreign relations will be based on our belief that human rights should be the core concern of foreign relations … we are ready to play a role in fostering peace and prosperity in the world we share with the community of nations.”