Farm attacks on the rise in South Africa, with 2014 being the worst in decades

Attacks threaten Africa's most successful commercial farming industry.

THERE has been an increase in the numbers of attacks on farmers in South Africa in recent years, with 277 incidents and 67 murders recorded last year alone, lobby groups said Thursday.

AfriForum, a non-profit organisation that represents the interests of mainly white Afrikaners and farmers union Tau SA said 2014 was the worst year in terms of farm attacks in recent decades.

There has been an increase in such murders since 2011, according to the study. Nine farmers had been killed this month alone, it added.

“If this trend is an indication of the rate of murders in 2015, it means that there will be more than 200 murders this year,” the groups said.

South Africa has Africa’s most successful commercial farming industry, and continuing attacks could hit it badly, affecting the country’s economy at a time when it is going through a hard patch.

South African has high rates of violent crime. Official figures show that more than 17,000 people were killed in 2013.

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