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Port Elizabeth – Over 100 people have been arrested for public violence and looting spaza shops during protests in Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape police said on Wednesday.
“The situation in some of the townships in Port Elizabeth remains tense but stable with police still maintaining a strong presence,” Brigadier Marinda Mills said.
Mills said police were engaging with various parties involved to offer assistance to those who had been left destitute by the violent protests.
Two isolated incidents occurred in Soweto-on-Sea and KwaMagxaki townships on Tuesday evening where a Chinese shop was looted.
“Whilst attending to a scene in Soweto-on-Sea, police members were pelted with stones and one member sustained an injury to his leg,” Mills said.
Protests broke out on Monday night after a Somali man was arrested for allegedly shooting a man dead outside a shop on Saturday evening.
“During our interaction with affected communities, it was clear that the motive for the attacks on foreign-owned spaza shops (was) not xenophobic in nature, but a criminal element that has seized an opportunity,” Mills said on Tuesday.
Mills said residents in the areas told police they had no problem working and living with immigrants, and many had helped them during the attacks.
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