Speaking in Britain, a young black leader from South Africa has warned that violence is the only way for blacks to change the system.
SV GPO tower PAN DOWN TO EXTERIOR buildings
CU Anti apartheid newspaper
CU Poster depicting South African policeman
CU Segregation signs in English and in Afrikaans
CU Poster depicting police brutality
MV Reporter and Mashinini
SV's Mashinini interviewed (3 shots)
Visnews reporter, Paul Toulmin-Rothe, spoke to Mr. Mashinini about the riots and demonstrations.
ROTHE: "This wave of unrest that's going on in South Africa just now started about three and a half months ago with demonstrations by students against the use of Africans language in schools. Was that the real matter in question do you think, the Africans language?"
MASHININI: "It was not the real thing. That situation has been explosive in South Africa for a long time and any other issue could have sparked off the unrest."
ROTHE: "Were you yourself involved in those demonstrations right in the beginning?"
MASHININI: "Yes I was."
ROTHE: "What part did you play?"
MASHININI: "I, with the help of a number of students, organised, planned and executed the demonstrations."
ROTHE: "Do you feel that they turned out a success, I mean are they doing what you intended to do?"
MASHININI: "It has developed slightly out of our hands because ours was just a peaceful demonstration until it was turned into a bloody confrontation by the police."
ROTHE: "What about the involvement of the Zulu workers at one stage?"
MASHININI: "They were instigated by the police to behave the way they did."
ROTHE: "How do you mean instigated, I mean what did the police do, do you think, in this case?"
MASHININI: "We have people who were at the meeting which was chaired by a policeman and in this thing police issued out guns and when they got a word that we knew that they have given the Zulus guns, they took back the guns and they all of them took to use their own weapons."
ROTHE: "One of the things the South African authorities said about you was that you ware a communist agitator, would you say that was true?"
MASHININI: "If you do anything against the racist regime you are a Communist."
ROTHE: "Do you think that the wave of demonstrations and violence that's going on in South Africa, do you think that's going to come to a natural end, to stop or do you think it's going to continue?"
MASHININI: "It cannot stop as long as they keep a lot oppressed, the struggle will go on. It may take another form but it cannot stop entirely."
Before crossing into Botswana, Mr. Mashinini dodged the South African authorities for a week despite having a 500 Rand (300 pounds sterling) reward on his head. He also accuses South African agents of attempting to kidnap him in Botswana. Mr. Mashinini is awaiting a British visa which will allow him to complete his studies in London.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Speaking in Britain, a young black leader from South Africa has warned that violence is the only way for blacks to change the system. Mr. Tsietsi Mashinini, the 19-year-old head of the militant Soweto students, made the remarks on Wednesday (6 October) at a London press conference.
He arrived in London a week earlier after escaping from South Africa to Botswana. According to most accounts, Mr. Mashinini planned and led the June 16 march in the township of Soweto that ignited months of racial riots and turned him into one of South Africa's most wanted men.