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‘Presidency’s stance on terror alerts is the only official position of govt’

The presidency’s statement was measured and diplomatic, reflecting cordial relations.

Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe says the statement issued by the presidency, relating to the recent terror alerts, is the only official position of government.

His comments at a Cabinet briefing in Pretoria earlier today suggest that government has distanced itself from the strongly worded statement issued by the department of international relations and cooperation (Dirco) and the State Security Agency (SSA).

Those departments accused the United States (US) embassy of trying to interfere in the country's efforts to combat terrorism.

The presidency's statement was measured and diplomatic, and reflected on the close working relations with the US.

Minister Radebe declined to answer any questions about allegations made against the Americans by Dirco, but referred to the US embassy statement.

"[It reflects] the same sentiment that the relations between the US and South Africa are cordial in all spheres - including on security matters. That is the official government position."

Dirco spokesperson Clayson Monyela has deleted a tweet in which he stated he received the highest level of approval for the statement.