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S. Africa Panel Said Faulting ANC

October 26, 1998

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) _ A panel probing apartheid-era abuses has accused the African National Congress of human rights violations, including torture and bomb attacks, the state broadcaster said today.

The ANC, which led the struggle against white rule and now is in power, has acknowledged it was told to expect implication in rights violations.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission will release the final report of its 2 1/2-year investigation on Thursday. The report is expected to place overwhelming blame for the era’s abuses on white governments and their brutal security services.

President Nelson Mandela’s office received an advance copy today, ahead of the formal handover ceremony when retired Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who chaired the commission, will formally present Mandela with the report.

South African Broadcasting Corp. radio said it obtained a ``preliminary document″ that condemns the ANC as politically and morally responsible for gross human rights violations during and after the fall of apartheid.

An ANC spokesman, Thabo Masebe, said he believed the radio report referred to a letter from the Truth Commission ``informing us of its intention to implicate the ANC in gross human rights violations.″

Commission officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

Justice Minister Dullah Omar told journalists in Pretoria he had heard the news report, but would not comment.

The ANC was nervous enough about the report to request a meeting with commissioners earlier this month. The panel refused.

The ANC says the accusations against it likely will center on the planting of land mines on border farms, abuses at its military camps in Angola and bombings.

Former President F.W. de Klerk, meanwhile, plans to ask a court to prevent the Truth Commission report from implicating him in covering up state-sponsored terror.

Update hourly