receives envelope containing bullet
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February 01, 2007
the acting editor of the privately-owned The
Standard on 31 January 2007 received a brown envelope containing
a bullet and a threatening message warning him to "watch out".
the Projects Editor of Zimind Publishers which publishes The Independent
and The Standard, confirmed the incident to MISA-Zimbabwe on 1 February
2007 saying a report had already been made to the police. Saidi
could not be immediately contacted for comment.
these threats very seriously and we have made a report to the police.
We do not know who is responsible," said Wetherell. The envelope
also contained a press cutting of a cartoon that was carried by
The Standard in its edition of 28 January 2007 and a message which
read: "Watch out Mr Editor."
was an illustration of baboons having a good laugh after picking
a payslip belonging to soldiers of the Zimbabwe National Army who
are reportedly lowly paid.
followed a story carried by the paper in recent weeks revealing
that there had been mass resignations and desertions from the armed
forces as a result of poor pay and working conditions.The paper
said many soldiers quitting the army had sought employment in neighbouring
countries and others vanished without a trace into the countryside.
an interview with the online NewZimbabwean which publishes in London,
Saidi said he had "no clue" as to who had sent the envelope.
"We are still
trying to make a full and comprehensive report about this incident.
We also hope to get the police involved shortly," he said by telephone
from Harare late Wednesday.
He said: "I
opened the envelope. My initial reaction was that it was somebody
trying to pull a prank on us, or seriously warning us about something.
"I am not scared.
I just feel this is a situation which puts the country in bad light
internationally...it suggests the level of intolerance has risen."
Saidi, a former
assistant editor with The Daily News, which is now banned, said
his experience was that "people who want to do such things usually
don't give a warning; they just go ahead and do it".
He said: "When
The Daily News printing press was bombed, there was no warning.
We also didn't get a warning when a bomb exploded just below the
editor's office." No arrests have been made since the bombing of
the printing press in January 2001.
Saidi said newspapers
in Africa "make a lot of enemies", and the bullet could have been
sent by someone "taking action to warn us".
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