Eleven taxi drivers shot dead in South Africa

A minibus with bullet holes on its side is seen on the road between Weenen and Colenso, in KwaZulu Natal province, South Africa, early Sunday, July 22, 2018. (AP)
Updated 22 July 2018
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Eleven taxi drivers shot dead in South Africa

  • Private minibuses provide essential transport for millions of South Africans

JOHANNESBURG: Gunmen have shot dead 11 taxi drivers returning to Johannesburg from the funeral of a colleague in Kwa-Zulu Natal, a police spokesman said on Sunday.
The drivers, who were members of the Gauteng taxi association, were in a minibus driving along the R74 when unknown gunmen launched an ambush and opened fire.
“There was a shooting at about 8 p.m. (1800 GMT) last night. The vehicle was ambushed. There were 11 fatalities and four were seriously injured and are in hospital,” Kwa-Zulu Natal spokesman Jay Naicker said.
“We understand they were from the Gauteng taxi association. There has been a lot of taxi violence in the area but we are still investigating who the perpetrators were.”
Minibus taxis are the most popular form of transport in South Africa and violence is common by rival groups vying for dominance on profitable routes.


Koreas to shut down some border guard posts

Updated 18 min 49 sec ago
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Koreas to shut down some border guard posts

  • The Demilitarized Zone that has divided the peninsula since the end of the Korean War in 1953
  • The DMZ, designated as a buffer zone, bisects the Korean peninsula and is about four kilometers wide

SEOUL: North and South Korea have agreed to close some guard posts along their border on a trial basis, Seoul’s defense minister told parliament Tuesday amid a rapid diplomatic thaw.
The Demilitarized Zone that has divided the peninsula since the end of the Korean War in 1953 is, despite its name, one of the most fortified places on earth, with the areas on either side of it bristling with minefields and barbed-wire fences.
Song Young-moo said the South would withdraw around 10 guard posts as part of confidence-building measures following the landmark summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and the South’s President Moon Jae-in in April.
“What it means is that we will first withdraw one or two guard posts and gradually expand it,” Song told lawmakers, adding the North would take reciprocal measures.
“The North and South agreed to withdraw guard posts that are closest to each other,” he added.
“The closest is about 700 meters away and we will begin withdrawing guard posts that are within one kilometer.”
A defense ministry official said the issue was still being discussed and declined to clarify whether the posts would be physically removed.
The 1950-53 conflict ended with an armistice rather than a peace treaty, leaving the two Koreas technically at war.
The DMZ, designated as a buffer zone, bisects the Korean peninsula and is about four kilometers (2.5 miles) wide. It includes a Joint Security Area around the truce village of Panmunjom, where negotiations take place.