Several shops and cars owned by foreigners were torched in downtown Johannesburg overnight in continued anti-immigrant attacks but another city that had seen the worst violence was calm.

Police spokesman Col. Jay Naicker said no violence was reported in the coastal city of Durban, where the violence began.

In a Johannesburg suburb, foreigners afraid to return to their homes took refuge in a community center.

In neighboring Zimbabwe, police were involved in minor clashes with dozens of protesters demonstrating at the South African Embassy against the anti-immigrant attacks. Protesters handed over a petition to embassy officials demanding an end to the violence in South Africa.