Soweto rocked by xenophobic violence

Johannesburg, South Africa (PANA) – The ruling African National Congress (ANC) on Thursday condemned an outbreak of xenophobic violence in Soweto that has left at least three people dead.

Police have confirmed that 15 people have been arrested and the situation is “tense but calm”.

Several foreign-owned stores were looted following claims that store owners were selling counterfeit and expired goods.

The ANC also said it was "concerned with the surge of illicit sale of expired and fake consumable goods and potentially-harmful food products". The official opposition Democratic Alliance said xenophobia was unacceptable and "has no place in our diverse society".

Ironically, the sprawling township outside Johannesburg, was savaged by anti-apartheid riots in 1976 which sparked the revolution which eventually toppled the white minority government.

Three years before South Africa hosted the 2010 FIFA World Cup – the first in Africa – the first wave of xenophobic violence swept across the country.

Within days tens of thousands of foreigners were displaced, amid scenes of chaos, carnage and mass looting. Foreign-owned homes, and businesses were targeted and more than 100,000 people were displaced. Some attackers reportedly sang Jacob Zuma's campaign song Umshini Wami (‘Bring Me My Machine Gun’).

On 21 May, 2007 President Thabo Mbeki – who was embroiled in a vicious power-struggle with Zuma – approved a request for the deployment of military personnel to quell the violence (for the first time in post-democracy South Africa).

When the dust began to settle, 62 foreign nationals were dead.
-0- PANA CU/MA 30Aug2018

30 august 2018 09:05:02

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