56 held in South Africa for holding officials hostage

South African security forces moved in to free three government ministers who were held against their will in a Pretoria hotel during a fractious meeting with anti-apartheid veterans, officials said.
Representative Image
Representative Image

Johannesburg

The security officers released defence minister Thandi Modise and her two colleagues after a three-hour standoff with the veterans on Thursday night and arrested at least 56 people at the scene, the NATJoints security agency said. The agency declined to give details on the rescue operation but said no shots were fired. Modise, her deputy Thabang Makwetla and Mondli Gungubele, a minister in the presidency, had met the veterans to hear their grievances over compensation for their role in the anti-apartheid struggle, officials said. When the ministers and the veterans failed to reach an agreement they decided to adjourn, Gungubele said in a video statement.

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