SA xenophobia: Anger over Nigeria envoy recall

Written by  BBC

South Africa has condemned Nigeria's decision to recall its ambassador over a spate of attacks against foreigners.


According to BBC SA called the step "unfortunate and regrettable" and said it would be curious for a sisterly country to want to exploit such a painful episode.

Nigeria has summoned Acting High Commissioner Martin Cobham along with Deputy High Commissioner Uche Ajulu-Okeke. "for consultation" over the "ongoing xenophobia", Minister of Foreign Affairs Aminu Wali said in a statement carried by media on Saturday. BBC reports.


In its response, South Africa's Department of International Relations and Co-operation points out that "a government resorts to such an extraordinary diplomatic step to express outrage at actions or behaviour of another government.


The statement says South Africa has not blamed Nigeria "for the deaths and more than nine (9) months delay in the repatriation of the bodies of our fallen compatriots" in attacks by Boko Haram militants.

At least seven people have died over a month of attacks on foreigners and foreign-owned property in South Africa.

Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini has been blamed for sparking the attacks with comments about foreign workers.

Thousands were displaced, with many Zimbabweans, Mozambicans, Malawians and others returning home and others taking refuge in temporary government-operated shelters.

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