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Xinhua : Lootings of foreign-owned shops re-flare up in S. Africa

April 30,2015

CAPE TOWN, Fresh lootings of foreign-owned shops have been reported over the past few days in northern South Africa despite intensified crackdown on xenophobic violence, authorities said on Thursday.

Police have arrested 15 suspects for alleged involvement in acts of violence aimed at foreign nationals in Thabazimbi, a township in Limpopo Province, Thabazimbi mayor Patricia Mosito said.

About 50 foreign nationals, including women and children, have fled their homes and sought refuge at facilities set up by the local government, according to Mosito.

The lootings started on the Freedom Day, April 27, when South Africans celebrated 21 years of democracy. President Jacob Zuma said in his Freedom Day speech that the government would ensure that xenophobic violence would never happen again.

The fresh lootings put Limpopo Province under spotlight after the latest spate of xenophobic violence died down in other parts of the country, notably Durban and Johannesburg.

At least seven people have been killed and thousands of foreigners displaced since late March when xenophobic attacks erupted.

On Tuesday, Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe reassured the country and the world that peace and calm had returned to communities that were affected by attacks on foreign nationals.

“We want to reassure those who have plans to travel to South Africa that our government is in charge. The violence has stopped,” Radebe said at a press briefing in Pretoria.

“We are now working hard to ensure that nobody within the borders of our country is victimized based on their country of origin,” said Radebe

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