"I haven't called this imbizo to say we are responsible‚ but because of your numbers you can stop this carnage. We believe that there's a third force to all of this‚” he said.
"You have all heard misleading reports and rumours saying the Zulus are mobilising and getting into trains to Johannesburg to fight. Those are people who want to pit us against each other."
He called for peace.
"I called you today to be shields of this nation. If indeed I have called you to arms this country will be in ashes as we speak. But I'm saying let's arm for peace‚ now I'm instigating you to mobilise for peace.
"As your king I say calm down. There are people who are pitting you against each other...avoid falling into a pit they are digging for you‚" he said.
Zwelithini convened the imbizo after calls for him to take responsibility for his comments‚ which were blamed for the attacks that swept throughout the country.
"People I spoke to in Pongola on March 15 have not killed anyone but those not in Pongola are the ones killing people."
Speaking at a moral regeneration event in Pongola about a month ago‚ Zwelithini said that foreigners should pack their bags and leave.
The comments are being probed by the South African Human Rights Commission‚ which is investigating whether or not they constitute hate speech.
"I urge that the South African Human Rights Commission does its work without interference. It must expedite its probe transparently and also look at the role of the media‚" he said. - The Times