Bomb, fire force Israeli company to move in South Africa

JOHANNESBURG, June 12 (JTA) — An Israeli shipping company in a Johannesburg suburb will move its offices after a bomb was discovered in a prestigious business complex located in the same street as a synagogue.

Police are still investigating the cause of a fire at Rutherford Estate in Waverley, Johannesburg, and have not ruled out the possibility that a pipe bomb found at the scene could have been intended for an Israeli shipping company, Polaris Shipping.

The branch manager of Polaris, Bruce Dorkin, said a gardener found the plastic pipe bomb, filled with gunpowder and encrusted with screws and nails, on Friday.

A fire engulfed the office block the following day, causing extensive damage to about 10 offices, including those of Polaris.

Dorkin said he is waiting for the results of the police investigation, but that he himself suspects both incidents are linked to the fact that the shipping line is Israeli.

Polaris plans to move immediately to another area with tighter security, Dorkin said.

“We did have 24-hour security linked to armed response, but we’re obviously going to have to look at stricter measures,” he said.

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