Zimbabwe opposition leader arrested, released again

[JURIST] Zimbabwe police on Wednesday arrested opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai [BBC profile] and twenty staff members ahead of a press conference where Tsvangirai was expected to denounce police brutality that occurred during a crackdown on anti-government protesters [JURIST report] earlier in March. Tsvangirai was released from police custody several hours later, according to a MDP official. Tsvangirari was previously arrested and allegedly beaten [JURIST report] during the last series of arrests; he was released [JURIST report] when prosecutors failed to show up at his court date. Amnesty International criticized [press release] the government for its treatment of Tsvangirai, and called on other African leaders to respond to today's events.

Police imposed a three-month ban [JURIST report] on anti-government protests last month after a political rally by the opposition Movement for Democratic Change [party website] led to confrontations between police and protesters around the country. Political tensions have run high in Zimbabwe [JURIST news archive] especially since Mugabe announced in December that he planned to extend his presidency from 2008 to 2010 to correspond with parliamentary elections. Wednesday's press conference coincided with a two-day African summit where leaders are expected to agree to ask Mugabe to step down when his term ends. BBC News has more. DPA has additional coverage.

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.