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Anti-apartheid hero Chris Hani's killer to be released

South Africa

A Pretoria court has granted parole to Janusz Walus, the convicted killer of South Africa’s anti-apartheid leader, Chris Hani; after more than twenty years behind bars.

Judge Janse van Nieuwenhuizen said on Thursday that Walus should be freed within two weeks. The Ministry of Justice has said it is considering an appeal, a decision that would likely be welcomed by the victim’s family.

Walus, 63, is serving a life sentence for murder, which almost threatened to derail South Africa’s transition to multi-racial democracy.

Janusz was convicted together with his counterpart Clive Derby-Lewis, a politician who provided the murder weapon.

Hani’s death lead to nationwide riots and triggered fears of a civil war. He was the leader of the South African Communist Party and chief of staff of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the ruling African National Congress (ANC).

After Hani’s funeral in his hometown Boksburg in 1993, angry youths clashed with police across South Africa in a series of violent acts that left over seven people dead.

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