Police keeping close watch after unrest leaves one dead, 5 injured in Joburg city centre

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(Duncan Alfreds, News24)
(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

One person has been killed in violence in the Johannesburg city centre, according to police.

Gauteng police spokesperson Captain Kay Makhubele said the victim had been stabbed with a sharp object at the corner of Bree and Plein Streets.

He could not yet confirm the identity or nationality of the deceased.

He also confirmed that five people had been injured.

A group of men, some of them wielding sticks, pangas and tree branches, marched through the city centre after disrupting a meeting in which IFP President Emeritus Mangosuthu Buthelezi spoke to hostel residents following a week of deadly xenophobic violence.

READ: Buthelezi's xenophobia message shunned as splinter group disrupts his speech to intimidate foreigners

Makhubele said 16 people were arrested for public violence and possession of stolen property.

Several shops were forced to close their doors as the protesters damaged property and looted several businesses.

Brigadier Mathapelo Peters has confirmed that the situation in the CBD, Jeppestown and Hillbrow was “under control”.

“Police have heightened visibility since this afternoon and will continue to monitor the area to ensure that no further incidents of violence erupt,” Peters said.

A group of men marched to the city centre and is believed to be the same group which disrupted a gathering addressed by Buthelezi on Sunday morning.

Buthulezi went to Murray Park, which is on the corner of Jules and Berg streets in Jeppestown, to speak to George Goch, Denver and Jeppestown hostel residents following a week of xenophobic violence and looting.

According to police a splinter group "disrupted the address and left before proceedings were concluded".

Peters confirmed that a number of businesses and shops were attacked and damaged as the group marched through the city.

Police had fired stun grenades and rubber bullets to restrain the crowd.

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