Spaza shop torched in Alexandra as riots against foreigners spread

2015-01-26 08:48

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A spaza shop was torched in Alexandra, north of Johannesburg in the early hours of this morning, Gauteng police said.

Police were called and informed that people were attempting to loot a shop owned by a foreigner, said Gauteng police spokesperson Lieutenant General Solomon Makgale.

“When police arrived, [the looters] fled and left the scene empty-handed,” said Makgale.

“Shortly thereafter, we were informed of a spaza shop that was set alight in another area of Alexandra.”

Police had been deployed to the area.

Meanwhile, two suspected looters were shot dead in Langlaagte last night.

They were allegedly part of a group that went to a shop owned by a Somalian with an intention to loot it on Sunday night, said Makgale.

A building next to the spaza shop, an engineering firm, was set alight, said Makgale.

“During the commotion, shots were fired and the two men were killed,” he said.

Police presumed the shots were fired by the group.

Looting across several townships began last week following the shooting of 14-year-old Siphiwe Mahori in Snake Park, Soweto.

The boy had allegedly been part of a group who set upon a shop kept by Somalian Senosi Yusuf last Monday. He was shot dead when Yusuf allegedly shot at the group.

A 19-year-old youth was shot in Naledi on Wednesday and was declared dead on arrival at hospital.

According to The Star, Nhlanhla Monareng was killed when police fired into a crowd gathered at a shop owned by a Pakistani. He was a bystander.

The newspaper reported that 74-year-old Malawian shopkeeper Dan Mokwena was also attacked and killed as he slept in his shop on Wednesday.

On Friday, a baby was trampled to death when a crowd fled from a shop they had just looted.

Makgale said police would continue monitoring the affected areas, and urged the public to report looting.

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