SOWETO, SOUTH AFRICA, SEPT. 16 -- Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini today called for an end to the violence among rival black factions that has taken at least 750 lives in the past six weeks.

But the "peace rally" at which Goodwill made his appeal appeared largely a show of Zulu power. Between 25,000 and 30,000 Zulus turned out armed with homemade weapons including sharpened iron poles, axes and machetes to hear their tribal king accuse the black nationalist African National Congress and its supporters of starting the factional bloodshed.

Goodwill and Paramount Chief Tudor Ndamase, leader of the Xhosa tribe in the Transkei homeland, made strong appeals for an end to the violence, which in the six weeks since spreading to black townships around Johannesburg has pitted Zulus of the Inkatha Movement against Xhosas, who mostly support the ANC. The two leaders urged members of both groups to shift their efforts to ending South Africa's apartheid system of racial separation and establishing black rule.

Goodwill, who devoted much of his speech to reviewing the bloody events in the townships over the past two months, blamed ANC supporters for starting the violence and turning the conflict into an ethnic one aimed, he said, at eliminating the Zulu homeland of Kwazulu and its leader, Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi.

"Attacks against Kwazulu can only lead to Zulus banding together -- and banding together in anger," Goodwill told the crowd, which responded with frequent applause. "Kwazulu is Kwazulu and it will remain Kwazulu."

Goodwill is recognized as king of all Zulu people and resides in Kwazulu. Buthelezi, in addition to being regarded as Kwazulu's political leader, heads Inkatha, which has sought to expand its influence into the townships around Johannesburg since July.

No ANC supporters were visible at the rally. The crowd consisted almost entirely of Zulu Inkatha supporters wearing red headbands and armed with what are viewed as "traditional" weapons: axes, spears, sharpened iron poles, fireplace pokers, knives, wooden clubs and car hubcaps turned into shields.

Police did not explain why the Zulus, most of them migrant laborers living in men's hostels here, had been allowed to attend the rally so heavily armed. But a Soweto police officer, Col. Tienie Halgryn, was quoted by the South African news agency, SAPA, as saying, "It is ridiculous to disarm 30,000 to 50,000 people."

{Following the rally in Soweto, a Zulu was injured after being set on fire by rival blacks, witnesses told the Associated Press. No other incidents were reported.}

Goodwill and Ndamase appeared earlier before a crowd in Thokoza, a township east of here, where they made a similar plea for ending the violence.

Law and Order Minister Adriaan Vlok, who has come under attack from the ANC and much of the white press for his handling of the violence, also made a brief appearance in Thokaza and at a nearby squatters camp. He promised to do everything possible to end the bloodshed.