13 June 2018

South Africa: One Month Later, No Arrests, Flaring Tensions

analysis

A month has passed since the shock attack on a Shi'a mosque near Verulam which killed one man and left two more badly wounded. Nobody has been arrested, and the Hawks will say only that the investigation is continuing. Meanwhile, tensions are flaring within the Muslim community - as leaders pushing for Sunni-Shi'a harmony say they are experiencing intense backlash from certain quarters.

"No arrests have yet been made," confirmed Hawks spokesperson Simphiwe Mhlongo to Daily Maverick. "The investigation is ongoing."

That is all that Mhlongo is willing to say about the priority crime unit's attempt to get to the bottom of the events at the Imam Hussain mosque in Ottawa on 10 May.

On that day, the mosque was attacked by at least two or three men who used a knife to slit throats, burned a library and a relic room, and attempted to spark a gas explosion in the kitchen. Mechanic Abbas Essop was killed. The mosque's moulana - religious leader - Ali Nchinyane and the mosque's caretaker Mohamed Ali were badly injured, but...

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