JOHANNESBURG – South Africa's justice minister threatens to use more force against striking miners, saying police will clamp down on illegal marches and weapons.
Jeff Radebe told reporters Friday the government will no longer tolerate the illegal protests where miners brandish machetes, knives, spears and clubs. Such marches have become daily events as the strike at Lonmin PLC platinum mine enters its fifth week.
Radebe refused to say whether police will be allowed to use live ammunition. Police on Aug. 16 opened fire on striking Lonmin workers, killing 34 and wounding 78 in a display of state violence that shocked the nation.
Miners on Friday rejected a Lonmin wage offer that was way below their demands.
Radebe said "All those involved in illegal activities ... are going to be dealt with."