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Zimbabwe activists tortured ahead of planned protests

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Torture

According to Jestina Mukoko, chairwoman of the Coalition of Civil Society Organisations, six people had, so far, been abducted by suspected state agents on the evening of Aug. 13 and Aug. 14.

They have been severely tortured and left to die.

The abductions came after the main opposition, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), calling for mass protests to raise concerns about the struggling economy.

Muleya Mwananyanda, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director for Southern Africa, said the country was witnessing a violent crackdown on activists and civil society leaders, with authorities using some of the brutal tactics of the former president, Robert Mugabe.

Meanwhile, witnesses reported heavy police and army presence in the capital as tensions rose ahead of the planned protest.

The National Police spokesman, Paul Nyathi, said intelligence and concrete evidence on ground revealed that the peaceful demonstrations would turn out to be violent one.

Nyathi reiterated that security forces would not fold their arms and allow violence, destruction of property, intimidation, threats and clandestine acts of violent agitation to take centre stage.

Meanwhile, many Zimbabweans were fed up with the government, which promised to fix the country’s economic woes when Mugabe was replaced by President Emmerson Mnangagwa in 2017.

Zimbabwe witnessed deadly protests earlier, after the government increased more than double fuel pump prices. (dpa/NAN)

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