Johannesburg – South Africa’s security agencies met on Wednesday to discuss the terror warning issued by the US Embassy in Pretoria over the weekend.
President Jacob Zuma said in a statement on Wednesday afternoon that the security cluster had met “to discuss the matter further, with a view to ensuring the continued safety of all in the country”.
In contrast to an earlier government statement, which downplayed the seriousness of the information on which the US had based its security message, the Presidency said: “The South African government will continue to discuss the matter with the United States government as part of on-going co-operation on security issues between the two countries.”
“South Africa and the United States continue to enjoy strong and cordial relations in various areas of cooperation including political, economic, social and security matters,” the Presidency said.
The departments of international relations and state security earlier slammed the US for basing its warning on information that was “very sketchy”.
In the statement, the government said the terror warning was “dubious, unsubstantiated and provided by a ‘walk-in’ source based on questionable conclusions”.
State Security Minister David Mahlobo earlier said the South African security agencies were working with the relevant authorities to keep citizens safe.
News24 has reported that state intelligence believed the information was based on that from a local East African businessman who had been discredited.
The government said in its recent statement that it had formally protested to the relevant embassies for the way the matter was handled.
“South Africa, as a sovereign peace loving country, has always adopted a professional manner in engaging with other countries on these issues.
“We are, therefore displeased with the manner in which some countries have reciprocated. Their actions have been disingenuous and a cause for serious concern to our government,” the government’s earlier statement read.