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Mnangagwa’s inauguration marred by arrests, abductions and torture of political activists

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LONDON, United Kingdom, September 4, 2023/ — Responding to the inaugurationof Emmerson Mnangagwa for his second term as President amid a political climate of fear and reports of multiple human rights abuses, including arbitrary arrests, abductions and torture of opposition party activists, Khanyo Farisè, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for Southern Africa, said:

“President Mnangagwa’s inauguration for his second term as President has been severely blighted by reports of attacks against opposition party activists and threats against those trying to organize peaceful protests amid a growing crackdown on human rights, especially the rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association.

“Nobody should be persecuted simply for exercising their human  rights. Everyone, regardless of their political affiliation, should be able to freely participate in peaceful activism without fear of abduction or harm. The Zimbabwean authorities must immediately stop issuing inflammatory statements that could incite attacks against political activists, human rights defenders and other people.”

“The authorities also must ensure a peaceful post-election environment by fully respecting,  protecting and ensuring the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly, association and expression. They must also conduct prompt, thorough, impartial, independent, effective and transparent investigations into pending cases of enforced disappearances, abductions, and torture. Those suspected of responsibility for these crimes must face justice in fair trials. Victims and their families must be provided with access to justice and effective remedies.”

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