Zim Riot Police beat up and arrest women protesting talks

PRESS RELEASE

27October 2008

Harare: RIOT police in Harare, today descended on hundreds of women
this morning who were peacefully protesting over the delayed
conclusion of the peace talks between Zimbabwe’s three major political
parties. At least 47 women were arrested around 10 in the morning and
over 100 were beaten in the city as they were walking to the venue of
the talks scheduled to begin this afternoon.

The Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ) had mobilized nearly 1000
women who were tear- gassed and badly beaten as they regrouped at a
spot near the Rainbow Towers where the talks are expected to be held.

Women started grouping for the demonstration around the Rainbow Towers
at about 7am on Monday 27 October 2008 and the police dispersed them
using tear gas and some of the women were beaten up. Some of the women
even attempted to go directly to the Rainbow Towers and were beaten up
too. By 1130, police had set up a road block and were turning away any
cars intending to go to the venue of the talks, regardless of their
purpose.
National Coordinator of the WCoZ, Netsai Mushonga is amongst those
arrested and information reaching their offices said the group has
been denied access to lawyers. Emilia Muchawa, WCoZ Chairperson, said
“the major concern by women is manifest hunger, amongst other
emergencies and the dire concern that failure to resolve the impasse
will further exarcebate the situation.”

It is for these reasons that Women demand the following;

That the political party principals put the interests and concerns of
the people of Zimbabwe first
That the Political Party Principals negotiate and conclude the talks
in good faith on Monday 27th October 2008.
That an Inclusive Government be in place shortly thereafter to begin
tackling the urgent challenges that the country is facing in
accordance with the Agreement.
That the Inclusive Government be constituted by a fair representation
of women within the spirit of the Government of National Unity deal,
SADC Protocol on Gender and Development and other regional and
international instruments.

Conclude the Talks, We are dying of hunger.

Pedzayi Hurukuro, Tafa nenzara.

Qedani inkulumo – sesilambile siyafa ngendlala

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Posted on 28 October 2008, in Southern African politics and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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