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Zimbabwe opposition lawmaker charged with terrorism
April 14, 2007
HARARE (AFP) - A Zimbabwean
opposition lawmaker and 12 activists arrested in a crackdown last
month appeared in court charged with terrorism, banditry and sabotage,
their lawyer said Saturday.
Lawyer Alec Mucahdehama
said the prosecution claimed Member of Parliament Paul Madzore and
his co-accused underwent training as "bandits, saboteurs, insurgents
or terrorists." "The prosecutor Austin Muzivi alleged
that between December last year and March this year, the 13 went
to Pretoria and Orange Free State in South Africa to undergo military
training on how to terrorise the government," Muchadehama told
The prosecutor "added
that they were taught to make and use firebombs", said Muchadehama.
The group was among scores
of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC, opposition) officials
and supporters who were arrested in what police said was a crackdown
on fire bombers accused of a series of attacks across the southern
Harare magistrate Gloria
Takundwa remanded the suspects in custody until Monday, when their
lawyer is expected to protest against the assault of the MDC activists
during their arrest and while in detention.
Opposition leader Morgan
Tsvangirai has denied accusations that MDC members were behind the
spate of bombings, saying they were were framed.
"The false allegations
against the MDC are not new," Tsvangirai said in a statement
"You will recall
that a few months after the presidential elections of 2002, malevolent
charges of treason were bought against me. These things are not
new to us. For months in 2002 we were labelled terrorists and saboteurs".
political tensions deteriorated last month when state security agents
assaulted Tsvangirai and scores of supporters and shot dead an opposition
activist as they broke up an anti-government rally.
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