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KwaZulu-Natal police killed six suspects and recovered five firearms in two separate shootout incidents on Thursday

KZN police spokesperson Brigadier Jay Naicker revealed that the first shootout happened early morning in Camperdown, Umgungundlovu District Municipality where four men were suspected of committing a string of cash-in-transit (CIT) robberies in the province.

"A team comprising police officers from various units, including the Hawks, gathered intelligence regarding the whereabouts of the suspects and when police announced their arrival at the identified house, they were greeted with a hail of bullets from the suspects," he said, SA News reported.

He added, "The police officers returned fire and during the shootout, four suspects sustained fatal gunshot wounds. Three firearms were found in the possession of the suspects."

In the second shootout, Naicker said that the police officers, who belong to the National Intervention Unit, acted upon information received and caught two suspects wanted for intimidation, extortion and other violent crimes.

When the police reached the suspects, they exchanged gunfire, resulting in the death of both suspects. Police found two firearms from them. Naicker further shared that the police in KwaZulu-Natal are committed to fighting against crime to maintain law and order in the province.

"Suspects who challenge the authority of the state by shooting at police officers will be met with the force proportional to their actions," he added.

Last week, Minister of Police General Bheki Cele noted that the South African Police Service (SAPS) is unapologetic in fighting against crime in the country and lauded the success of Operation Shanela which was launched in May last year to deal with crime in high-density areas.

In the last year, the operation has successfully arrested 600,000 criminals with the help of 71,000 operations across South Africa.

The minister stressed that the Community Policing Forums, community patrollers and private security have been working actively to support Operation Shanela's success. Due to Operation Shanela, crime has been reduced across the country, as per Provincial Police Commissioners.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, on the other hand, said earlier this year that the South African government has strengthened the security measures to fight against crime by recruiting 20,000 police officers over the last two years in the SAPS.