Police Arrest 153 In South Africa Looting Chaos

A man looks on as he runs with items from a shop believed to be owned by a foreigner, in SowetoSky News

Mobs have looted more than 80 foreign-owned shops amid major disorder in South Africa, prompting 153 arrests.

President Jacob Zuma has called for order to be restored following days of violence in Johannesburg’s Soweto township.

“The president has instructed the security cluster in cabinet as well as the provincial and local government … to work together to bring the situation under control and work towards restoring normalcy,” Mr Zuma’s office said in a statement.  

One foreign shopkeeper was shot dead by a teenager who allegedly tried to rob him on Monday night in the township.

A man looks on as a women with a baby on her back runs with items from shop believed to be owned by a foreigner, in Soweto

A woman carrying her baby runs from a shop with a bag full of items

And police spokesman Kay Makhubela said at least 80 shops, most of them owned by Somalis, have been looted over the past few days.

“Young boys wanted to rob a shop and the owner opened fire and killed one of them,” Mr Makhubela told the AFP news agency.

“That made the community angry, and that’s what started all this.”

Locals look on as young women run with items from a shop believed to be owned by a foreigner, in Soweto

Bystanders look on as two women walk off with looted products

The boy who was killed was 14 years old and the shopkeeper who shot him is a foreign national.

The violence has evoked memories of the spate of xenophobia-related incidents around Johannesburg’s townships in 2008 that left 62 people dead.

Dozens of people now face charges of public violence – including a police officer reportedly caught on film participating in the looting.

Locals run with items from a shop believed to be owned by a foreigner, in Soweto

The disorder has been blamed on poverty and unemployment

Lieutenant-General Lesetja Mothiba, police commissioner of South Africa’s economic hub Gauteng, said officers had confiscated fridges and groceries valued at thousands of rands.

He blamed “youth who are addicted to drugs” for “taking advantage of this situation”.

“They are targeting specific items from the shops, cigarettes, airtime and cash,” he said.

Observers say widespread frustration caused by poverty and unemployment often descends into anti-immigrant violence in Johannesburg.


One thought on “Police Arrest 153 In South Africa Looting Chaos

  1. I don’t believe any “LOOTING” stories anymore. They all are black people in staged-looking photos smiling for the cameras, just like here.

    How about the looters in our government & the FED looting literally TRILLIONS? Where is THAT story?

Join the Conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *