Hun­dreds of Nige­ri­ans on flight to flee South Africa

The Morning Call - - NATION & WORLD -

JOHANNESBU­RG — A group of Nige­ri­ans boarded a free flight from Johannesbu­rg to La­gos on Wed­nes­day, fol­low­ing a week of vi­o­lence tar­get­ing for­eign­ers in South Africa that has stoked ten­sions between Africa’s two largest economies.

It was not im­me­di­ately clear how many peo­ple were on board the flight, op­er­ated by the pri­vate Nige­rian air­line Air Peace, but Nige­ria’s gov­ern­ment said it es­ti­mated 313 peo­ple would board.

In to­tal, 640 Nige­ri­ans liv­ing in South Africa had reg­is­tered at Nige­rian mis­sions to take the flights of­fered by the air­line last week af­ter bands of South Africans launched vi­o­lent at­tacks against for­eignowned shops and stalls, loot­ing and burn­ing the small busi­nesses and at­tack­ing some of the shop­keep­ers.

The vi­o­lence has killed at least 12 peo­ple.

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