SA team on the ground in Tunisia

2015-03-19 08:18
An image grab taken from the state-run Tunisia 1 channel shows people escaping from Tunis' famed Bardo Museum during an attack by men armed with assault rifles. (Tunisia 1, AFP)

An image grab taken from the state-run Tunisia 1 channel shows people escaping from Tunis' famed Bardo Museum during an attack by men armed with assault rifles. (Tunisia 1, AFP)

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Cape Town - The department of international relations and co-operation says it cannot yet confirm whether a South African citizen was among at least 19 people killed when gunmen attacked a national museum in Tunisia on Wednesday.

AFP on Wednesday night quoted Tunisia's interior ministry as saying a South African was among the tourists killed in the attack in Tunis.

South Africans were also among the wounded, Tunisia's health minister Said Aidi reportedly said.

However, department of international relations & co-operation spokesperson Clayson Monyela told News24 early on Thursday morning that the department can't confirm this.

"Our mission is in touch with authorities there," he said.

"Our team is on the ground and visiting hospitals. We want to confirm identities before we say this. We don't want to make people panic," he said.

The department will release a statement when it receives any confirmation, Monyela added.


On Thursday, Japan confirmed that three of its citizens had been killed in the attack.

Earlier reports indicated that tourists from Japan, Italy, Columbia, France, Germany, Australia, Poland and Spain had been killed. More than 40 people were wounded.

The gunmen, who were dressed in military uniforms, opened fire on the tourists as they got off a bus and then chased them inside the museum, according to reports. Many were on a cruise which had docked in Tunis. Two Tunisians were also killed.

Tunisia's president has promised to wage a "merciless war against terrorism" after the attack. Two gunmen were killed in the attack, and authorities are hunting for possible accomplices.

Read more on:    north africa  |  tunisia attack

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