Cape Town - South Africa closed its embassy in Nigeria's commercial capital Lagos after a spate of attacks on South African businesses in response to anti-foreigner violence in South Africa, the government said Thursday.
The embassy temporarily closed out of concern for the safety of its staff, said foreign affairs spokesman Lunga Ngqengelele.
"We have been in communication with the Nigerian government and we have been assured of the protection of the businesses belonging to South Africa," Ngqengelele told local broadcaster eNCA.
The vandals attacked numerous South African-owned businesses in Nigeria, including South African telecom giant MTN, supermarket chain Shoprite and clothing retailer PEP.
The violence broke out in reprisal for a wave of attacks at the weekend against foreign African nationals in South Africa's Gauteng province.