Following the increasing xenophobic attacks on foreigners in South Africa, Zulu King, Goodwill Zwelithini, has appealed for calm.
The King had been accused of fueling the attacks, which have killed at least seven people, after saying foreigners should “go back to their countries.”
More than 300 people have been arrested in the unrest.
Thousands packed into a stadium in the eastern city of Durban to hear King Zwelithini’s address. Zwelithini, who said his comments were distorted by the media, believes that it was not fair to blame the violence on one individual, pointing out that there had been previous outbreaks of xenophobic violence in South Africa, dating back several years.
He added that the South African Human Rights Commission should investigate the hate speech charges against him without hindrance.
The BBC’s Karen Allen says there was anti-foreigner sentiment in the crowd, which booed the ambassadors representing the countries whose nationals had been affected.
Among the latest arrests were three men detained in connection with the murder of a Mozambican national in Alexandra, a township in Johannesburg.