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Trump's tweet about South Africa proves once again he doesn't understand Africa

Trump's tweet about South Africa proves once again he doesn't understand Africa

"(The) South African Government is now seizing land from white farmers", Trump tweeted.

The move was made to address historical inequalities in land ownership between black South Africans and the country's white minority that have persisted since apartheid ended in 1994.

A visibly angry Glaude was having none of it.

South African lawmakers are now debating expropriation of some 150 farms in the country, including whether a constitutional amendment would be needed to move forward with the plan and what compensation might look like.

THE FACTS: Trump appears to be quoting in part from Fox News host Tucker Carlson, who noted that South Africa has begun seizing land from its citizens.

Trump's statement echoed that off white supremacists.

Despite the lack of solid data, the racially-charged issue of South African farm murders has recently become a cause célèbre among "alt-right" activists across the world, with figures such as Mike Cernovich, Lauren Southern and Katie Hopkins enthusiastically pushing the "white genocide" line.

A spokeswoman from President Ramaphosa's office called Trump's tweet "misinformed", according to Reuters. No land has been "seized" since the reform plans were announced, the ANC says.

Whites, who account for just 8% of South Africa's population, own 72% of the country's individually owned farm and agricultural land, according to the government's Land Audit report in November.

While Trump deflects and sets his sights on Africa, amid a hush money scandal involving his ex- lawyer Michael Cohen, a South African cabinet minister said on Thursday that his tweet won't affect the USA relationship with the country.

"The President of the United States needs political distractions to turn our gaze away from his criminal cabal, and so he's attacking South Africa with the disproven racial myth of 'large scale killings of farmers, '" the former diplomat tweeted Thursday.

Speaking on the sidelines of a land summit in Bela Bela on Thursday, Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane responded to Trump's tweets by saying: "This is our country and only solutions that come from where we live will work".

CNN, whose website has over 200 million unique browsers globally monthly, highlighted that Trump's statement contradicts official statistics which states that farm murders are at a 20-year low in South Africa.

Claims of "genocide" against white South Africans, however, have been picked up by some white nationalists in the US, and leaders of a right-wing South African group traveled to the U.S.in May to lobby officials about the alleged targeting of white farmers. Many victims of farm attacks are indeed non-white farm workers, as opposed to white farm owners or workers.

Ramaphosa said the land-reform measure is "key to stability" as whites control a vast majority of the country's land, while blacks make up almost 80 percent of the country's population. We opposed that obviously, it was wrong 25 years ago and it is wrong now.

Dirco emphasised that the tweet by the US President was "based on false information and lobbying by certain South African lobby groups that seek to derail and frustrate the land redistribution programme".

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