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Woza leaders Mahlangu and Williams released
Violet Gonda, SW Radio Africa
June 09, 2007

Woza rights campaigners Jenni Williams and Magodonga Mahlangu who had been arrested early this week have been released today on $100 000 bail each and remanded to the 18th of June. They were arrested after they handed themselves in at Bulawayo Central Police station, in solidarity with their colleagues who had also been arrested while demonstrating for their inclusion in the SADDC initiative peace talks between government and opposition parties.

Five of their fellow activists released on Friday were beaten during their detention since Wednesday. Rosemary Siziba and Angeline Karuru received particularly vicious attacks. Annie Sibanda, WOZA spokesperson told SWRA that Alice Banda, one of the activists who was also assaulted by the police but had not been arrested, was hospitalized after being kicked in the abdomen, and was due for emergency exploratory surgery on Saturday.

The US State Department condemned the violent suppression of WOZA demonstrations and had called for the immediate release of the activists. Jenni Williams is a recipient of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's 2007 International Women of Courage Award for Africa.

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