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  • Strikes and Protests 2007- Save Zimbabwe Campaign

  • MISA statement on the violent dispersement of peaceful demonstrators
    March 16, 2007

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    The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) is dismayed and horrified at the brutality displayed by the Zimbabwean government during the violent dispersement of peaceful demonstrators on Sunday, March 11, 2007. This action constitutes a most brutal attack on fundamental rights of freedom of expression, association and assembly witnessed in our region, Southern Africa, in many years.

    MISA has closely monitored developments since Sunday, March 11, and is further appalled at the ease with which authorities defy the law and observance of basic human rights. Events began with the arrest of the journalists and political leaders on March 11, 2007. Following this, police defied at least three High Court orders to allow lawyers access to the detained persons and allow medical practitioners access to the brutally assaulted detainees, as well as to bring the accused persons to the High Court by 08h00 on March 13, 2007.

    The events that have transpired in Zimbabwe signal a frightening turn in the political development of our region, especially in light of the deafening silence of our governments and political leaders. Does their silence mean they condone the actions of the Zimbabwean government? We demand clarity and intervention from our governments; intervention aimed to restore the dignity of a people to whom the rest of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region has often looked to for guidance and solace in their times of political struggle.

    MISA appeals to the SADC Secretariat, international community, SADC citizens and civil society to strongly condemn this violence and the lack of respect for human rights. We also appeal to the media, whether state-controlled or independent, to vigorously report on the situation in Zimbabwe and break this silence.

    At this time we stand in solidarity with Zimbabwe and its people.

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