Cosatu: No excuse for Soweto looting, violence

2015-01-22 19:58

There is no excuse for assault, killings and looting of foreign-owned shops in Soweto, says Cosatu.

"The police must take action, but in an even-handed way, treating all people equally," said Congress of SA Trade Unions' spokesperson Patrick Craven today.

"The problems we face - unemployment, poverty and crime - must never be blamed on people on the basis of their country of origin."

The trade union federation condemned the violence. It called on the alliance, which was made up of Cosatu, the African National Congress and the SA Communist Party, and civil society in Gauteng, to campaign in the affected areas to help stop the violence.

Police were on high alert in Soweto today, the third day of clashes between locals and foreigners that left at least two people dead.

Two local teenagers have been shot dead and two injured since violence broke out between locals and foreigners in Snake Park on Monday.

Nearly 70 people have been arrested on charges including murder, robbery, public violence, and illegal possession of firearms. Eight of them were foreign nationals allegedly found in possession of unlicensed firearms.

One was a police officer caught on camera allegedly taking part in the looting.

The looting started on Monday after 14-year-old Mthetheleli Siphiwe Mahori was shot dead, allegedly by a foreign shop owner in Snake Park. He was apparently part of a group that tried to rob the shop.

Today, Senosi Yusuf appeared in the Protea Magistrates' Court accused of killing Mahori. His case was postponed to January 26 for a bail application.

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