The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has been deployed to assist police as they continue to try and control violent protests marked by looting and destruction of property in parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
In a statement, the military says: “The duration and number of deploying soldiers will be determined based on the assessment of the situation on the ground by the relevant law enforcement agencies.”
It says the soldiers will be providing safety and safe environment for members of the SAPS and other law enforcement agencies whilst they carry out their Constitutionally mandated law and order duties.
Brigadier General Mafi Mgobozi says more information on the deployment of the soldiers will follow in due course.
SABC News reporter, Jayed-Leigh Paulse spotted the soldiers prior to the confirmation:
So far, six people have reportedly died amid the demonstrations, calling for the release of former president Jacob Zuma from prison.
National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure says at least 219 people have been arrested.
There have been chaotic scenes since the weekend with stores having been looted, vehicles burned and buildings destroyed. DA Leader John Steenhuisen has called on President Cyril Ramaphosa to urgently intervene to control ongoing violent protests.
Looting in Cinderella Park in Pietermaritzburg, residents disheartened: