The South African Minister of Police, Mr Louis Le Grange, on Thursday (19 June) announced the first official list of casualties in four days of disorder in coloured -- mixed race -- townships on the Cape Peninsula.
GV Burning barricade in Cape Town coloured township and people looking
GV Burnt-out building with debris on footpath (2 shots)
SV Black children outside wrecked building
SV INTERIOR PAN To children outside
SV 'Power Strike' graffiti on wall
GV Black children in field throwing stones
GV Police walking along roadway (2 shots)
GV Children throwing stones
GV Police standing near-squad cars on roadway
GV Children throwing stones as traffic passes (2 shots)
GV Police van cruising
GV Two cars along otherwise deserted roadway
GV People outside devastated building (2 shots)
GV Men clearing up debris (2 shots)
INTERIOR SCU Minister of Police speaking at news conference
LE GRANGE: "I would not like to, during this meeting, to go into political issues, or political background for the whole situation that we are experiencing during the past few months. But, what happened during the past two or three days, are definitely the work of a hooligan, communal element. And that is definitely my opinion."
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Background: The South African Minister of Police, Mr Louis Le Grange, on Thursday (19 June) announced the first official list of casualties in four days of disorder in coloured -- mixed race -- townships on the Cape Peninsula. Mr Le Grange said thirty people had been killed and one hundred and forty one injured. He also said at a news conference in the capital, Pretoria, that a ban stopping newsmen and television crews from entering trouble spots would be continued.
SYNOPSIS: Scenes of devastation like this were repeated in several townships in the Cape Town area. The towns were reported on Thursday (19 June) to be calmer following looting, stoning and burning. But reports said Elsies River, where police shot two coloured youths dead during demonstrations against inequality at schools, was reported to be very tense.
Before Mr Le Grange's statement, unofficial casualty figures had varied. Cape Town newspapers had published that a survey of Cape Town hospitals indicated that forty-two people had died. Many children had used the weapons easiest to obtain -- stones. Mr Le Grange was to say that, among the injured, sixty-two had been struck by stones, or stabbed. Stones had hit fifteen whites who were in their cars.
Traffic was able to move along roadways once more after police had cleared away barricades the rioters had set up on Tuesday night (17 June) when police had opened fire to disperse stone-throwing crowds, and to stop arson and looting.
The South African Police Commissioner, General Mike Geldenhuys, had issued a statement on Wednesday (18 June) saying this men would shoot to kill if lives were in danger. While the later withdrew this statement, the Untied States warned South Africa's Ambassador in Washington that relations would suffer if South Africa abandoned restraint in dealing with racial unrest. Police said shopkeepers in trouble spots feared further arson. Meanwhile, at his news conference, Mr Le Grange speculated on the identifies of those who had caused the unrest.