Incident Summary:

12/25/1995: At least 500 suspected members of Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) attacked the Shobashobane settlement in KwaZulu-Natal province, South Africa. The assailants, armed with guns, axes and spears, killed 14 villagers and wounded at least another 20 villagers; they also lit several houses on fire. Specific motive behind the assault is unknown; however, Shobashobane is a stronghold of African National Congress (ANC).



South Africa

Sub-Saharan Africa

region/u.s. state:



Location Details:
The Shobashobane village in Izingolweni

Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Armed Assault
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Private Citizens & Property
Name of Entity Civilians
Specific Description Civilians living in the Shobashobane settlement
Nationality of Target South Africa
Additional Information
Hostages No
Ransom No
Property Damage Yes
Extent of Property Damage Unknown
Value of Property Damage Unknown
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Melee Knife or Other Sharp Object
Firearms Unknown Gun Type
Weapon Details
Most of the victims were stabbed and hacked to death
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?No
Part of Multiple Incident?No
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Additional Information One source states there were 500 attackers while a second source states there were 600. In addition, one source states that there were 20 injured residents while a second source states there were 21.
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) (suspected) No
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators 500
Number of Captured Perpetrators Unknown
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 14 Fatalities / 20 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 14
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 0
Total Number of Injured 20
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
"Ten die in new fighting in South Africa," Agence France Presse, December 26, 1995
Allan Seccombe, "14 dead in S.African Christmas massacre," Reuters, December 25, 1995.