Three men armed with knives entered a South African mosque Thursday and slit the throats of a handful of people, before torching the temple and scampering off into the night.
The attackers cut people’s throats, said an emergency responder with the Reaction Unit South Africa. Police said they found a knife at the scene, while bloodied men were seen on the ground receiving medical care. One of the victims died, according to local reports.
“The motive of the attack on the three men is unknown at this stage,” Capt. Nqobile Gwala with police in KwaZulu-Natal province told The Associated Press. South Africa does not receive the same level of terrorist attacks as other nearby African nations.
The other victims were in critical condition after the attack in the eastern town of Verulam, which took place shortly before the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. Nick Piper, a director at Signal Risk, an Africa-focused risk management firm, told AP it was too earlier to determine a motive for the attack.
“Given the low baseline terrorism risk in South Africa, incidents of this nature are, on average and without further evidence, more likely to be linked to personal or communal grievances than acts of terror as we understand them,” Piper said.
South Africa is mired in turmoil. The country’s parliament cleared the way for a constitutional amendment in March letting the government seize land from white landowners without compensation, raising concerns about potential economic catastrophe in the name of racial justice. (RELATED: Will South Africa’s Plans To Expropriate White-Owned Land Turn It Into Zimbabwe?)
Lawmakers in the racially divided nation approved the motion in a 241 to 81 vote as part of a so-called “land reform” program to even the disparity in ownership between South Africa’s black majority and white minority. (RELATED: How The Establishment Media May Justify South Africa Taking Land From Whites)
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