Almost 5,000 people have taken part in a rally against xenophobia in South Africa’s coastal city of Durban following attacks on foreigners. BBC reports:
President Jacob Zuma has condemned the recent attacks, in which at least five people have died, as “shocking and unacceptable”. The Zulu king has been accused of fuelling the violence. He denies this. Many jobless South Africans accuse foreigners of taking jobs in a country where the unemployment rate is 24%.
“No amount of frustration or anger can justify the attacks on foreign nationals and the looting of their shops,” President Zuma told parliament on Thursday. He also urged for calm to be restored in affected areas.
Protesters marched through Durban chanting “Down with xenophobia” and “A United Africa”, led by the city mayor and the premier of KwaZulu Natal province. Marcher Vanessa Govender told the BBC: “It’s just a mammoth show of support for all those foreigners who have fallen victim to the past two weeks of xenophobic violence.”