An estimated 17,000 people have been displaced. At this time there are four big security shelters to which many people have been redirected, sometimes against their will. These facilities are Silverstroom (Atlantis), Youngsfield (Kenilworth), Soetwater (Kommetjie) and Harmony (Strand). There are still satellite churches, mosques and public shelters, however, even these are overcrowded. We had hoped that the city would have open the Civic Centre and other community halls, which they did not do, and thus we are left with many people with no place to go and no idea about the future.
As the Civil Society Coalition, we have been providing food, blankets, toiletries and other amenities along with medical care, and legal consultation to this body of distressed people. We have a comprehensive list of all facilities housing displaced people, and we try to ensure that they are fully stocked with whatever they require three times per day.
Approximately 10,000 people have been displaced across Cape Town by xenophobic violence
TAC and the AIDS Law Project would like to extend thanks to all of the individuals and organisations who have assisted us to provide humanitarian relief to displaced people. In particular we would like to thank Sonke Gender Justice Network and ARASA for their help in coordinating the relief effort and Habonim Dror for providing us with a constant stream of volunteers and donations of food and other necessities.
Violence against immigrants has broken out in Cape Town.
Since Sunday 11 May 2008, xenophobic violence has swept through Gauteng. Beginning in Alexandra, the violence rapidly spread to two dozen communities across the province, including the inner city of Johannesburg. At least 23 people have been confirmed dead, hundreds injured and more than 7000 people dispossessed and displaced. So far the Western Cape has not experienced the levels of violence witnessed in Gauteng. But we have seen isolated attacks against foreign nationals, and have received information on further planned attacks. A meeting of over 20 civil society organizations was held in Cape Town yesterday to discuss a strategy for pre-empting what has happened in Gauteng from spreading to this province.
The Treatment Action Campaign condemns the wave of xenophobic violence sweeping through communities in Gauteng. We call on Government to take action to halt the violence; to put in place a national strategy to protect the safety, health and well being of victims of xenophobic attacks and to take steps to prevent the violence from spreading further.
The 25th issue of Equal Treatment (June 2008) contains a special report on the systematic abuse of the rights of immigrants.
PASSOP and TAC hold demonstration against police brutality and xenophobia
A submission has been made to the South African National AIDS Council (SANAC) on the health situation of refugees, asylum seekers and undocumented persons.