Somali envoy in South Africa to discuss xenophobic attacks
Wednesday, July 03, 2013
A Somali envoy on Tuesday met officials in Pretoria in a bid to ease
tensions stirred by recurring attacks on Somali refugees in South
Somalia's deputy foreign minister, Jamal Barrow, said his
visit was also a fact-finding trip following recent violence which has
seen looting of foreign-owned shops and the death of a Somali
He met Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor, the Deputy
Police Minister Makhotso Sotyu and Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister
Barrow said after the rash of meetings: "I am convinced that a great deal has been done to address the problem."
found a common understanding, common action and common sentiments on
how we can avert such incidents in the future," Barrow, said after
wrapping up talks with Ebrahim.
South African Foreign Minister
Maite Nkoana-Mashabane came out harshly last month to express the
government's "strongest condemnation" of the "heinous" attacks.
Barrow said he was "convinced that Somalis were not specifically targeted".
problem was criminal activity," he said adding Somalis had become prey
as they keep large amounts of cash on them and are unable to open bank
accounts due to lack of passports.
He said Somalia would soon start issuing identification documents to its nationals who have been granted asylum in South Africa.
"By issuing passport we will solve this problem."
widespread poverty and unemployment, frustration in South Africa's
run-down neighbourhoods often boils over into anti-immigrant violence.
An explosion of deadly attacks in 2008 killed more than 60 people and displaced thousands into refugee-style camps.