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Zimbabwe government abuses critics, allege rights groups

Emmerson Mnangagwa’s
the International Federation for Human Rights.
Mnangagwa of
Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights
African National Congress
MDC Alliance
The Associated Press

Godfrey Kurauone
Tsitsi Dangarembga
Robert Mugabe
Milton Murairwa
Kumbirai Mafunda
Patrick Chinamasa
Brian Nichols
Nelson Chamisa

the South Africans

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Chikurubi Maximum Prison

South Africa

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The New York Times
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Opposition officials, human rights groups and some analysts accuse Mnangagwa of abusing the rights of critics, using tactics as harsh as his predecessor, the late Robert Mugabe.Mnangagwa and his officials deny the charges, saying they have carried out democratic reforms and they are justified in taking measures against people who are seeking to illegally overthrow the government.Dozens of people — including lawyers, journalists, nurses, doctors, opposition members of parliament, and human rights activists — have been arrested and charged with violating COVID-19 lockdown rules, or for protesting on the streets and on social media.ZimRights, a local organization, says it has recorded 820 “human rights violations” such as arbitrary arrests, assaults by state agents, attacks on journalists, abductions, “gunshot assaults” and dog bites between the end of March when the lockdown was introduced and August 9.“These cases reveal a trend of human rights violations consisting of acts aiming to morally exhaust, silence, punish, impoverish, sometimes physically injure the targeted individuals, and exposing them to the risk of contracting the virus while arbitrarily detained in prisons,” said Zimrights in a joint statement with the International Federation for Human Rights.It’s not even safe to criticize the president in bars, on public transport or on social media, according to the lawyers’ group, which said it has represented about 60 people charged with insulting the president since Mnangagwa took over following a coup that deposed Mugabe in 2017. Now the police officer faces up to a year in jail or a fine if convicted on charges of “undermining the authority of or insulting” the president.“We are seeing an increasingly worrying trend where authorities are abusing the law to persecute people perceived to hold views different to those of the establishment,” said Kumbirai Mafunda, spokesman for Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, which is providing lawyers to many of those arrested in the crackdown.

As said here by FARAI MUTSAKA