We're worried about violence shown by some Zim police, says EU

2016-08-31 08:08
File: AFP

File: AFP

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Harare - Ahead of a planned national stay-away in Zimbabwe on Wednesday, the EU has expressed its concern at rising cases of police violence towards protesters.

"Use of force should only be considered as a last resort," the EU delegation to Zimbabwe said on Tuesday in a statement likely to anger officials close to longtime president Robert Mugabe, which says Western embassies are behind the wave of protests currently rocking this southern African nation.

In power in Zimbabwe for the last 36 years, Mugabe is taking an increasingly hard line on protesters, with police using tear-gas, batons and water cannon to beat back not just those taking to the streets but also bystanders unlucky enough to be caught up in the chaos.

The #Tajamuka pressure group behind Wednesday's stay-away has urged Zimbabweans to avoid the streets and any confrontation with police - but it's still not clear how widely this protest will be followed.

Anti-Mugabe campaigners held two stay-aways in July but only the first was widely followed. 

No single leader of the protests

Analysts say many in Zimbabwe's struggling economy simply cannot afford to take time off while others - including schools - were ticked off by the authorities for responding to the strike calls. Schools are on holiday in Zimbabwe this month.

On social media there are complaints that few are aware of the strike call (though it has received the backing of the Combined Harare Residents Association, which has members in the capital's townships). Since the leader of the #ThisFlag protest movement, churchman Evan Mawarire, was forced into exile last month, protests have been staged on a near-daily basis by a variety of groups.
There is no single leader of the protests.

Clearly worried by footage and pictures of police turning on protesters in Harare recently, the EU said: "Police have a duty to facilitate the conduct of undisturbed peaceful demonstrations and petitions."

Earlier on Tuesday the main opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai said he'd visited a 62-year old woman seen being kicked by police outside a court in Harare on Friday. 

Lillian Chinyerere "sustained shoulder injuries and is now hard of hearing" but still wants to take part in the next protest, Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change party said.

Read more on:    mdc  |  eu  |  morgan tsvangirai  |  evan mawarire  |  robert mugabe  |  zimbabwe  |  zimbabwe protests  |  southern africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.


Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.