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Police to continue monitoring Hermanus amid protest

Police officers are engaged in running battles with the protesters as they attempt to disperse the crowd of disgruntled residents.

Residents of Zwelihle near Hermanus protest on 12 July 2018. Picture: Monique Mortlock/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Tensions remain high in Zwelihle, Hermanus on Thursday afternoon amid ongoing protests.

Police officers are engaged in running battles with the protesters as they attempt to disperse the crowd of disgruntled residents.

Residents are protesting over service delivery in the area, forcing the closure of the R43.

WATCH: Hermanus protests enter second day

A resident in the area has told Eyewitness News they won’t stop protesting until a community activist has been released from police custody.

The man was arrested for incitement and malicious damage to property.

A large plume of smoke can be seen a short distance away from where protesters have apparently torched the municipal pool facility on the border of Zwelihle and Mount Pleasant.

Schulphoek Road that leads into Zwelihle is littered with rocks, empty tear gas canisters and rubber bullet casings.

A group of protesters are facing police officers, with those in front protecting themselves with shields of corrugated iron sheets. Officers are firing rubber bullets and lobbing tear gas and flash grenades in a bid to push back the demonstrators.

Protesters are retaliating by throwing rocks and tear gas canisters back at police.

OTHER RESIDENTS TERRIFIED

Hermanus residents caught in the middle of violent protests say they are too scared to leave their homes.

Although police officers have managed to push protesters away from Schulphoek Road by firing rubber bullets, protesters have moved to Swartdam Road.

A few hundred residents are standing on top of a hill next to the Walker Bay Recycling facility, throwing rocks and petrol bombs at officers and edging closer.

Officers are outnumbered, but continue firing rubber bullets, throwing stun grenades and tear gas into the crowd.

A Mount Pleasant resident says she's terrified.

“It’s affecting us as well. We can’t go to work and the children can’t play on the streets.”

EWN has seen at least eight people being arrested, including three women.

(Edited by Winnie Theletsane)

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