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Strikes and Protests 2007- Save Zimbabwe Campaign
of injuries of tortured civil society activists and opposition party
Association of Doctors for Human Rights (ZADHR)
March 14, 2007
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The Zimbabwe Association
of Doctors for Human Rights (ZADHR) has, having been granted extremely
delayed access to Opposition Party Leaders and Civil Society Activists
arrested on Sunday 11 March 2007, been able to assess the extent
of the injuries they sustained.
It is highly regrettable
that the medical treatment of these persons was wilfully delayed
by the Zimbabwe Republic Police despite the stated urgency of the
need for medical treatment. This resulted in the aggravation of
injuries sustained in several persons.
In violation of the rights
of the injured persons detained, medical treatment was denied on
11 March 2007 and again on Monday 12 March 2007. In default of a
High Court Order granted on the evening 12 March 2007 the police
further denied medical access to the injured persons. Permission
to take the injured to a medical facility was finally granted on
the afternoon of Tuesday 13 March 2007.
In the interim several of
the persons detained were in a grave medical condition. Of the 64
persons attended to 20 are currently admitted to hospital for treatment.
The injuries documented
were consistent with beatings with blunt objects heavy enough to
cause the following:
- Fractures to hands, arms
and legs in 5 individuals including Lovemore Madhuku with a fractured
ulna. 3 of these, Elton Mangoma, Sekai Holland and Morgan Tsvangirai
sustained multiple fractures.
- Severe, extensive and
multiple soft tissue injuries to the backs, shoulders, arms, buttocks
and thighs of 14 individuals.
- Head injuries to 3 individuals,
Nelson Chamisa, Morgan Tsvangirai and Lovemore Madhuku with the
latter two sustaining deep lacerations to the scalp.
- A possibly ruptured bowel
in 1 individual due to severe blunt trauma to the abdomen.
- A split right ear lobe
sustained by Grace Kwinjeh.
Prolonged detention without
accessing medical treatment resulted in severe haemorrhage in Morgan
Tsvangirai leading to severe anaemia which warranted a blood transfusion.
Injuries sustained by Sekai Holland were also worsened by denial
of timely access to medical treatment which led to an infection
of deep soft tissue in her left leg. Denial of access to treatment
in another individual suffering from hypertension lead to angina.
Further tests are currently
being carried out to determine the fuller extent of injuries in
several of those currently admitted. Some will require surgical
procedures as part of their treatment. Sekai Holland has already
undergone a surgical fixation of the fracture in her left ankle.
2 of the individuals hospitalised
were admitted due to conditions resulting from poor conditions of
detention with severe diarrhoea in 1 individual and extensive and
severe flea bites in 1 individual.
In addition to those tortured
during the course of their arrest, 2 individuals were shot while
attending the funeral of Gift Tandare, who was shot dead on Sunday
March 11 2007. The two individuals sustained gunshot wounds to the
left ankle and right arm respectively. One sustained a shattered
left ankle from the gunshot wound and is likely to require amputation
from the left ankle downwards. The other individual primarily sustained
shrapnel wounds early on Monday 12 March but however was shot again
in the same arm on the evening of Monday 12 March upon his return
to the funeral resulting in a open fracture to the arm, the severity
of which may warrant amputation of that arm.
the ZADHR fact
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