Mugabe critics 'injured in custody'

Court adjourns after activist collapses as doctors allege beatings in custody.

    Tsvangirai was allegedly beaten by government officers; Mugabe said "he asked for it" [AFP]

    Lawyers believe the activists could face additional charges relating to terrorism that carry much harsher sentences of life imprisonment or the death penalty under the nation's sweeping security laws.

    Beating 'deserved'

     
    Robert Mugabe, the Zimbabwe president, confirmed earlier this week that Morgan Tsvangirai, the opposition leader, had been assaulted, and that he deserved it.
     
    Your Views

    "... If there was no South African support, Mr Mugabe would have disappeared long ago ..."

    Baz, Vancouver, Canada

    Send us your views

    He told supporters the day after returning from a regional summit in Tanzania: "Yes, I told them he was beaten but he asked for it."

      

    Tsvangirai's arrest and subsequent assault on March 11 while trying to attend an anti-government rally was widely condemned by the West.

     

    But the SADC summit, which was meant to address the crisis in Zimbabwe, ended up with a statement of "solidarity" with the 83-year-old Mugabe's government.

     

    Mugabe chosen
     
    Mugabe has been chosen by his ruling Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic-Front (Zanu-PF) party to stand again as its candidate in 2008 presidential elections. 

    Mugabe will seek another term as president,
    having won his party's endorsement [AFP]


    The decision was taken on Friday after a Zanu-PF central committee session in Harare and came despite growing opposition to Africa's oldest leader.

     

    The opposition MDC called the decision a "tragedy" for the country, saying Mugabe had already mismanaged the country for 27 years.

     

    Tendai Biti, the party's secretary-general, said: "This country will not move so long as Mugabe is there."

     

    "It's also a shame on Mugabe's part. After mismanaging the country for 27 years, he now wants to stand for another five years."

     

    Economic crisis

     

    Mugabe was endorsed by the central committee despite being widely blamed for the political and economic crisis in Zimbabwe.

     

    Nathan Shamuyarira, the party spokesman, said: "The candidate for the party in 2008 will be the president himself. He was endorsed by the central committee."

     

    Priscilla Misihairambwi-Mushonga, secretary-general of the faction, said: "The leadership of the ruling party has failed this country and they will have to explain this to future generations of what they did."

     

    Sean McCormack, a US state department spokesman, called the decision "sad" and "outrageous", adding that "we hope better for the Zimbabwean people".

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Double standards: 'Why aren't we all with Somalia?'

    Double standards: 'Why aren't we all with Somalia?'

    More than 300 people died in Somalia but some are asking why there was less news coverage and sympathy on social media.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Kobe Steel: A scandal made in Japan

    Kobe Steel: A scandal made in Japan

    Japan's third-largest steelmaker has admitted it faked data on parts used in cars, planes and trains.