South Africa: Cardinal Napier Condemns Xenophobic Attacks

Johannesburg — The Archbishop of Durban, Wilfrid Fox Cardinal Napier has condemned ongoing attacks against foreign nationals and migrants in South Africa.

Speaking on the sidelines of a Caritas South Africa General Assembly held in Lumko Institute Retreat Conference Center-Benoni, the cardinal asked the perpetrators of the violence to respect human life.

"Xenophobia is not wrong just because someday I might be on the run and take refuge in someone else's country. It is wrong because that person (the foreigner) is made in the image and likeness of God - just like me," Cardinal Napier said.

"... everyone, has a life that is of supreme value. It does not matter where that person comes from, their origins, how they have come. It does not matter. Human beings are made in the image and likeness of God," he emphasized.

Cardinal Napier also asked politicians and trade unions in the country to stop making anti-foreign sentiments.

"Some trade unions and sectors of different professions such as that of truck drivers are trying to make (foreigners) the reason why they are without jobs -because companies are hiring foreign drivers. It is not necessarily true. I don't think they have even checked whether this is true or not," said the Cardinal.

The Government of Nigeria has summoned South Africa's high commissioner over the looting in Johannesburg.

Other African governments have issued warnings to their citizens over the violence.

The riots against foreigners allegedly originated from the killing of a local taxi driver. Gangs, in South Africa, went about attacking migrants and foreigners; looting and burning foreign-owned shops.

The police have reportedly arrested 41 people in connection to the attacks.

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