NewsSouthern AfricaSouth Africa: ANC says xenophobic attacks un-African


Posted on Wednesday, 15 April 2015 13:20

South Africa: ANC says xenophobic attacks un-African

By Crystal Oderson in Cape Town

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe says the xenophobic attacks are un-African. Photo©ReutersSouth Africa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) party has described the attacks against foreigners in the country as criminal and shameful.

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said the attacks on Africans had to be condemned in the strongest terms.

"It is un-African to attack innocent people and we want to encourage people to be more tolerant" Mantashe said.

Fresh violence have broken out and has now spread to other areas in north of Durban

His call came amid intensified attacks against foreigners in the coastal city of Durban.

"Fresh violence have broken out and has now spread to other areas in north of Durban" Robert Mckenzie from Emergency Medical Services said.

Police in Durban are also maintaining a high presence in the central district following Tuesday's violent clashes between locals and foreign nationals.

Horrific pictures of women fleeing with their babies, men standing with knives and police keeping locals and foreign nationals from attacking each other were beamed across local television screens.

Senior government ministers including that of Police and Defence said more police officers were being deployed to the area but it ruled out the deployment of the army to quell the violence.

However, human rights organisations say the government lacked "political will" to deal with the violence.

Five people, including two Ethiopian nationals have died since violence erupted at the end of March.

Thousands of foreign nationals have been displaced as violence again erupted in townships outside Durban in Kwazulu-Natal.

Close to 8000 of people have been housed by the local Red Cross in Durban, having fled their homes after the violence broke out two weeks ago.

Police said close to 50 people have been arrested for looting and torching immigrants' shops.

Meanwhile, the humanitarian group, Gift of the Givers has stepped in to assist foreign nationals with shelter and food.

The organisaton said those rescued said they had been stoned, threatened and had to be evacuated from their homes.

Organisations like Amnesty International said government was not doing enough to deal with the violence.

Amnesty International said 2008 violent attacks should have been 'lesson' to the government.

Locals have taken to social media to express their outrage.

People calling into a local talk radio station echoed these sentiments and said they were "tired of hearing from government officials that they were dealing with the violence.

They demanded tougher action instead of government simply' condemning the acts of this nature".

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