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Johannesburg Quiet As Mob Violence Subsides, But Immigrants Remain Fearful

The streets of Johannesburg were reported to be calm Monday as the anti-foreigner violence that claimed 50 lives in the past 10 days to two weeks subsided, but tension remained high as few foreigners ventured out and little business was done.

Thousands of Zimbabweans were said to be fleeing South Africa - though heading for other countries rather than their homeland. Zimbabwe's opposition Movement for Democratic Change laid on buses to ferry hundreds of Zimbabweans home.

Red Cross officials estimated that 25,000 Zimbabweans were heading for Zambia to escape the xenophobic mob violence which has turned South Africa from a political and economic refuge into a place where death can lurk around any corner.

Methodist Bishop Paul Verryn, whose Central Methodist Church in Johannesburg has been a haven for Zimbabweans, told reporter Chris Gande of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that thousands of Zimbabweans remain huddled at police stations and other shelters where they feel safer than in their former homes.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...