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Police on alert after 3 more officers shot

Two JMPD officers and a Cape Town policeman were shot while on duty. All 3 are recovering in hospital.

53 police officers have been killed in South Africa since January. Picture: Free Images.com.

CAPE TOWN/JOHANNESBURG - A manhunt is underway after a policeman was shot and wounded near the N2 Gateway housing project in Delft, Cape Town while on patrol.

Police are investigating a case of attempted murder and malicious damage to property after the 37-year-old officer was shot at three times after he stopped to confront a suspect in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Over the last week, three officers died in shootouts with robbers in Temba, Vosloorus and Jeppestown, while Hawks official Petrus Holz was stabbed to death while changing his tyres on the N2 highway in Cape Town.

The Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) has confirmed two metro police officers have been shot and wounded in Midrand.

"The sergeant was shot twice in the chest and both legs, while the other officer got shot in the neck. They were taken to the Sunninghill Hospital and doctors are working on them," said JMPD spokesperson Wayne Minaar.

No arrests have been made in this latest attack.

'LIFE-THREATENING SITUATIONS'

National police spokesperson Vishnu Naidoo said officers have been told to treat every situation as life-threatening and to always call for back up.

"We have now intensified our communication with our members to take utmost precaution when executing their duties."

He said police officers are being targeted by violent criminals in retaliation for their fight against crime.

"The reason why our police officers are coming under such attacks is because of our unrelenting attitude towards fighting crime, towards criminals."

Naidoo said it's disheartening for officers to see their colleagues die and sends what he said is a "wave of depression".

The presidency has called on the public to rally behind police as they fight to stop violent criminals in their communities.

President Jacob Zuma has extended his condolences to the families of four slain police officers and has condemned the murders.

Police said they're prioritising these cases, and Zuma has called on the public to work with law-enforcement agencies to fight crime.

Echoing the calls for police to protect themselves, presidency spokesperson Bongani Majola said, "Police are the buffer between the community and criminals. We should all work together to support the police in their work. We also urge the law enforcement officers to protect themselves within the confines of the law."

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