Cape Town – The Department of International Relations and Co-operation (Dirco) has confirmed that it is probing allegations of a scuffle between Cuban police and South African students living in that country.
A video that has since gone viral on social media shows a group of students being manhandled by the police.
According to News24, the students said the incident occurred at a hostel in Santa Clara.
“The students were having a birthday celebration inside the hostels and someone complained about the noise and called the cops on them,” the report quoted the students as saying.
In the video, a man, who is believed to be one of the students is seen sitting on a couch, with his hands held behind his back and being restricted by one of the men in uniform. He is then slapped by another, also in a uniform, before he is dragged away, while the police proceed to accost more students, as screaming ensues.
@DIRCO_ZA @ClaysonMonyela thusang foo https://t.co/iidYyCCSkj
— Tumi Sole (@tumisole) November 8, 2021
In a statement, the department said it was aware of the video and was working with relevant authorities to investigate and ascertain the circumstances which led to the incident.
“The South African Government is aware of the video circulating on social media purporting to involve South African students in Cuba. The Department of International Relations and Cooperation is working with relevant authorities to investigate the situation,” Dirco said.
STATEMENT | The South African Government is aware of the video circulating on social media purporting to involve South African students in Cuba. The Department of International Relations and Cooperation is working with relevant authorities to investigate the situation.
— DIRCO South Africa (@DIRCO_ZA) November 8, 2021
Meanwhile, Deputy Health Minister Sibongiseni Dhlomo has asked the public to stop sensationalising the incident, as it could harm diplomatic relations, EWN reported.
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Compiled by Reginald Nhlapo