An anti-immigration protest is expected to be held on Wednesday, September 23, in Pretoria. Participants will reportedly gather at Church Square at 10:00 (local time) before marching to the Nigerian embassy to protest the perceived government inaction in curbing illegal immigration and bias towards employing immigrants over local nationals.
A heightened security presence is expected in the vicinity of the demonstration and localized transportation disruption should be anticipated.
South Africa has long been prone to waves of anti-immigrant sentiment and xenophobic violence. The opening of the country's borders in the early 1990s prompted an influx of migrants, mostly from other African countries. However, high unemployment rates and a stagnant economy have led to tensions between local and foreign nationals, which have sporadically escalated into attacks on foreign-owned businesses and rioting. Violent unrest, mostly in townships but occasionally in central areas of urban centers such as Durban and Johannesburg, has left dozens of people dead and thousands displaced, with the government criticized for its perceived inability or reluctance to decisively address the issue. Outbreaks of xenophobic violence in South Africa also have the potential to generate reprisals in neighboring countries.
Individuals in South Africa are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.
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