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Nigeria says ambassador recall from S. Africa 'usual practice'

28 April 2015, 06:52

Abuja - The foreign minister on Monday sought to calm South African anger about the recall for consultations of its top two diplomats over a wave of anti-immigrant attacks, saying it was nothing out of the ordinary.

South Africa issued a testy statement on Sunday, a day after Abuja announced it had summoned its acting high commissioner to Pretoria and consul-general in Johannesburg for talks on the issue.

"This is a usual practice in the conduct of diplomacy," Foreign Minister Aminu Wali said in a statement on Monday.

"For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to reiterate that the two senior diplomats have been invited to come for consultation after which they would return to their duty posts.

Also read: Nigeria denies recalling High Commissioner to South Africa

"They have, therefore, not been recalled, as erroneously portrayed in the media," he said.

At least seven people have been killed in violence targeting immigrants to South Africa in recent weeks, forcing many to flee their homes and the army to be deployed to keep the peace.

Nigeria said it was "deeply concerned" about the situation but there were "satisfactory indications that the South African authorities have taken firm measures to stem the tide of attacks".



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