Cape Town, Oct. 3 (Xinhua/UNB) -- South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday expressed his "deep regret" at the recent spate of xenophobic violence in the country.
"We have expressed our deep regret at the attacks directed at foreign nationals and our condemnation of all forms of intolerance and acts of violence," Ramaphosa told a press conference after meeting with visiting Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari in its administrative capital Pretoria.
South Africa was hit by a wave of xenophobic attacks, claiming the lives of at least 12 people -- both foreigners and South Africans -- in some parts of the country last month.
Following the attacks, hundreds of Nigerians residing in South Africa have been reportedly repatriated.
Ramaphosa said the two countries are equally committed to upholding the rule of law and ensuring that all those involved in criminal activities are prosecuted, regardless of their nationality.
"We welcome the willingness of the government of Nigeria to work with us to address these challenges," Ramaphosa added.
Buhari said the attacks were "unacceptable" and called for preventive measures.
"We call for the strengthening and implementation of all the necessary measures to prevent the reoccurrence of such actions," he said.
Ramaphosa responded by saying that early warning mechanisms will be set up to avoid further xenophobic violence. "When we see there is restiveness in both of our people ... we will be able to inform one another."
Ramaphosa has sent a team of special envoys to deliver messages of solidarity to Nigeria and some other African countries following the xenophobic attacks.