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US slams rising Zim’s military linked rights abuses

By Staff Writer

THE United States has slammed Zimbabwe’s rising military linked human rights abuses blaming the government for treating such perpetrators with impunity.

Details contained in a 2021 human rights report shows  the US embassy concerns over  abuses perpetrated by the police, which include arbitrary killing of civilians, torture, inhumane or degrading treatment and arbitrary detention of civilians, among others.

“The Constitution prohibits torture and other cruel, inhumane, or degrading treatment or punishment; however, there were reports that police, civilian intelligence and military intelligence officers engaged in such practices with impunity,” the report read. 

“Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) reported that security forces abducted, assaulted, and tortured citizens in custody, including targeted assaults on and torture of civil society activists, labour leaders, opposition members, and other perceived opponents of the government.”

The report added: “Throughout the year police used excessive force in apprehending, detaining and interrogating criminal suspects, including the use of torture while in police custody. Police and military officers used violence to enforce COVID-19 lockdown measures, to disperse peaceful demonstrations, and to disrupt informal trading.

“Impunity remained a problem. The government took very few steps to identify or investigate officials who committed human rights abuses or acts of corruption and did not systematically arrest or prosecute such persons.”

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