Bloodshed In Harare, Protesters fighting police brutality face tear gas, water cannons in Harare

Protesters In The Capital Set  ablaze streets
Protesters In The Capital Set ablaze streets

{BNN/HARARE, Zimbabwe} – In a painfully ironic twist of events in Zimbabwe’s capital Harare, a protest carried out against the unprecedented rise of economic crisis and police harassment turned bloody when police officers clashed with the demonstrators.

Protestors are said to have faced police machinery, tear gas, water cannons and warning shots fired by security officials to break the riot on Monday.

The protest reportedly comes after several demonstrations, with protesters voicing the grievances of local people against President Robert Mugabe’s government were held in the capital city.

Mugabe had held power in the South African Country since 1980 but had always been a subject of intense criticism from his countrymen because of the disappointing economic and social conditions in the country.

On the other hand, reports also pointed out that the protest on Monday witnessed a few protesters also severely beating up by two police officers with sticks and throwing stones at them and their vehicles. The gathering is said to have mainly consisted of young men haunted by the rising unemployment rates in the country, making do with meagre jobs to survive.

As the protesters started to overtake security officials, the police sought to negotiate with the crowd, concentrated in Harare’s eastern suburbs. The protesters had meanwhile halted vehicles in the roadways, blocking the highway, forcing many to walk miles to get to work.

At least 30 people were reportedly arrested later, after the police tried to contain the riot by bringing in police dogs and firing off ammunitions.

In another incident, a taxi driver was seen getting beaten up by six riot cops, while another officer carrying a machine gun was seen to have been stamping on the head of another man.

Drivers, who constituted a major part of the crowd had their issues with the numerous roadblocks that police sometimes set up in the city streets. The drivers complained that the roadblocks were an excuse for the police to demand bribes from them.

However, the police said that they had reduced the number of roadblocks ahead of complaints from law makers, tourism operators, etc.

On July 1, protesters reportedly burnt a warehouse at Beitbridge, a busy border post between Zimbabwe and South Africa, over a Zimbabwean government decision to ban a wide range of imports.

The economic deterioration of the country has been imminent and has caused widespread fury as corruption and mismanagement still prevail.

Zimbabwe’s financing from international organisations has also dried up due to failure to repay debts.

Additionally, international sanctions had also been imposed because of concerns over rights violations which Mugabe had dismissed for several years.

Finance minister, Patrick Chinamasa has been requesting several Western countries to unlock financing for Zimbabwe in the form of loans that were halted close to two decades ago.


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About Cholo Brooks 16926 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.