Rescue officials: shark kills man off Cape Town

A shark killed a surfer off Cape Town Thursday, South African police said.

Police spokesman Andre Traut said the 20-year-old South African was in the water with his brother and a friend at the time of the attack. Police did not immediately release the man's name.

Following the attack, the government canceled a permit that had allowed a research film crew to throw fish and blood into the water to attract sharks, a practice known as chumming. Critics had said the chumming could attract sharks to popular beaches, but the government's department of environmental affairs had said the researchers were working too far from shore for it to be a threat.

Thursday, environmental affairs spokesman Zolile Nqayi said the permit was withdrawn to calm panic among the public, not because officials believed the chumming was linked to the shark attack. Nqayi said the chumming was being done far from the site of the attack.