In recent years South Africa has seen a surge in the number of refugees as conflicts and war continue to ravage various parts of the African continent. Somalia, for an example, has civilians fleeing their homes almost daily as they fear endless battles between Islamist insurgents and the government backed forces. It is estimated that there are about three millions Zimbabweans that have fled to South Africa for a better life. Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and old rival Morgan Tsangirai, united in government ago, but they remain at odds over several key issues and have struggled to turn around the battered economy.

Resentment against foreigners in South Africa boiled over in part because of frustration over government’s failure to deliver housing and social services 14 years after the end of apartheid. In May 2008, xenophobic violence irrupted in several impoverished communities in Johannesburg areas and spread quickly across the country.

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