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'Zulu King didn't incite xenophobic attacks'

Twice in the past few weeks the Zulu monarch has been quoted calling on foreigners to leave SA.

FILE: President Jacob Zuma and Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini. Picture: Supplied

JOHANNESBURG - The KwaZulu-Natal government on Thursday said while it's been difficult to trace the source of ongoing xenophobic attacks, Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini can't be held responsible for the violence.

On Thursday, representatives from the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) and local and foreign community leaders gathered in Braamfontein to discuss the recent wave of attacks in Durban.

Community Safety Department spokesperson Sipho Khumalo said Zwelithini was merely alarmed by the number of illegal entries into the country.

Khumalo said the Zulu king was calling on government to investigate foreigners wanted for crimes in their own countries.

"The king never asked anyone to attack our brothers from Africa. He was merely saying government needs to attend to this thing and sort out this problem."

Twice in the past few weeks the Zulu monarch has been quoted calling on foreigners to leave South Africa as they were causing problems in the country.

The department said the call was never meant to incite violence.

The king has been engaging with religious leaders and is expected to clarify his position soon.

Earlier this week around 300 foreign nationals marched in the Durban CBD to protest against the recent xenophobic attacks in the province.