Violence continues in South Africa over students' protests against the segregated school system.
GV EXTERIOR Students walking down Adderley Street, Cape Town and congregating in front of shopping centre (3 shots)
SV PAN Riot police officer talking to crowd with loud-hailer
GV PAN Crowd with officer entering and addressing crowd with loud-hailer (3 shots)
SV PAN Police directing white shopper away from area
GV PAN Police riot vans arriving
GV Uniformed and armed police entering shopping centre
SV Uniformed police forcing students into vans (2 shots)
GV Riot vans leaving area
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Background: Violence continues in South Africa over students' protests against the segregated school system. Police with batons charged a crowd of students in the commercial centre of Cape Town on Saturday (24 May). Reuters news agency said the police arrested seventy of the students, most of whom were coloureds. Estimates at the number of students ranged between one and four thousand.
SYNOPSIS: The students had organised the march as part of the nationwide protest. Last month (April), coloured high school pupils began a boycott of class rooms that spread to other parts of the country. Students claim the education system in South Africa is biased and unequal, with three times a much money spent on each white pupil as on each coloured.
Police closed off Adderley Street, a major thoroughfare in the heart of the city. A police spokesman said later the students were repeatedly asked to disperse.
Traffic was halted, and white shoppers and pedestrians directed out of the area. they were warned that police were equipped with tear gas, and an anti-riot device called the sneeze machine, which has been used in earlier clashes with pupils.
Before the police arrived, two large department stores in the area closed their doors, and other smaller shops also put up their shutters. The day before this protest, thousands of pupils continued their boycott throughout the South African Peninsula. The Cape Times reported there were no normal lessons at any coloured, Indian or black schools.
The police spokesman said the students refused to head the warnings to disperse, so police charged with batons. He said some demonstrators were hurt by batons, and in the rush to get away.
Principals of coloured schools had told their pupils there had been instructions to expel them if they did not resume their classes by the following Monday (26 May). Reuters said that before Friday (23 May), the classroom boycott had seemed to be abating. But, on that day, there was violence at Blomfontein in the Orange Free State. A black teenager died, and a white man was badly beaten up as police sealed off a township, and children set cars and buildings alight.
Minister of Coloured Relations Marais Steyn warned students they would face disciplinary measures if they weren't back at school on Monday (26 May).