Three men charged with racist attack in swimming pool in South Africa

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Three white South African men have been charged with crimes, including attempted murder, after alleged racist attacks on two black boys sparked public outrage.

A man was caught on video attacking a black teenager who was using a pool at the Masellspoort Resort in Free State.

The man tried to prevent teenagers from swimming by claiming the pool was for whites only.

In a video widely seen on South African social media, the men yelled at and beat the boys. One of the men pushed one of the boys into the water.

Additional security video footage shows a man trying to prevent a teenager from entering the pool and a group of whites swimming at the time exiting the pool as soon as the black teenager enters. It is reflected.

Johann Nell, 33, and Jan Stephanus van der Westhuisen, 47, have been released on a warning and are expected to appear in court again next year, police said.

“The two have appeared in court on charges of assault and criminal bodily injury, and the case has been postponed to January 25, 2023, and they have been released on warning,” Police Commissioner Baile Motswenyane said.

A third suspect was due to appear in court on Thursday when various political parties and movements were protesting outside the courthouse.

The incident has been widely condemned, including by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

“As black and white South Africans, we must unite to condemn all manifestations of racism and any attempt to explain or defend such crimes. It’s not just a black issue,” Ramaphosa said in a statement.

A member of the left-wing Economic Freedom Fighters Party visited the resort and asked the manager for an answer.The manager claimed the resort had no racial segregation policy.

Racism is still a thorny issue in South Africa, nearly 30 years after the country transitioned from white minority rule known as apartheid to democracy.

In 2018, real estate agent Vicky Momberg was sentenced to three years in prison for yelling racist insults at a black police officer in the first landmark sentence to imprison a person for racist conduct. rice field.

In 2020, Adam Catzavelos, a white man, was convicted of bodily harm and given a suspended sentence after using racist slurs in a video circulated on social media.