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HARARE, Zimbabwe, Sept 14, 2018 (News Wires) - Zimbabwe's main opposition says it has postponed an event to affirm its leader as the country's "duly elected president" because of a deadly cholera outbreak in the capital.

The announcement by the Movement for Democratic Change party comes after the government banned "public gatherings" in Harare to help curb the outbreak.

The opposition on Saturday had planned an "inauguration" of Nelson Chamisa after losing disputed elections. He would be the latest African politician to hold a ceremony of defiance while claiming the presidency.

The MDC party says the event will occur "on a later date."

Chamisa narrowly lost the July 30 election, the first after the fall of decades-long leader Robert Mugabe. A legal challenge to the results was rejected by the Constitutional Court.

 

MOSCOW, August 30, 2018 (News Wires) - Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov discussed options for a peace settlement in Syria with Syrian opposition leader Nasra al-Hariri, the ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

The foreign ministry said it stressed the need to establish dialogue between the Syrian government and the “constructive” opposition.

HARARE, August 8, 2018 (News Wires) - Zimbabwe police on Wednesday arrested former finance minister and opposition politician Tendai Biti as he tried to cross the border and seek asylum in neighbouring Zambia, his lawyer said.

Biti, whose party formed an election alliance with President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s main rival Nelson Chamisa, is the first senior opposition politician to be arrested in the aftermath of last week’s disputed presidential election won by Mnangagwa.

Lawyer Nqobizitha Mlilo said Biti was arrested after presenting himself to Zambian immigration officials at Chirundu border post, north of the capital Harare and police had not yet informed him of the charges.

PARIS, July 25, 2018 (News Wires) - French President Emmanuel Macron came under fresh criticism from opposition leaders on Wednesday after appearing to dare opponents to take him on over a scandal surrounding his senior bodyguard and ripping into the media in front of supporters.

Critics say Macron’s office failed to properly punish Alexandre Benalla, the head of his security detail, or refer him promptly to judicial authorities over the incident, which has sparked the biggest political crisis of his tenure.

Footage showed Benalla, who was fired on Friday, hitting a male protester and dragging away a woman while off duty and wearing a riot helmet and police tags.

Appearing at a closed-door event in front of his own lawmakers and ministers on Tuesday, Macron said he alone was responsible for what happened. Macron has not spoken to the media since last week.

“If they want to hold someone responsible, he is standing before you, they can come and get him,” he said, in a video leaked to the media.

Opposition leaders dismissed the comments as bravado.

Far-left lawmaker Alexis Corbiere accused Macron of trying to bully the opposition.

Macron also slammed the media, echoing language that has been used by US President Donald Trump to defend his own actions.

The crisis began when the newspaper Le Monde identified the man beating a protester on a video as Benalla.

“We have a press that is no longer pursuing the truth,” Macron said. “What I see is media power that wants to become judicial power.”

The head of Human Rights Watch in France, Benedicte Jeannerot, tweeted that Macron’s remarks were “dangerous rhetoric while journalists across the world are under attack by populist leaders and autocrats to discredit or stifle any criticism of power”.

HARARE, June 5, 2018 (News Wires) — Thousands of opposition supporters marched in Zimbabwe’s capital on Tuesday to demand electoral reforms ahead of the July 30 vote, the first since Robert Mugabe stepped down last year.

The street demonstration was Harare’s largest since the massive one in November leading to Mugabe’s departure. Speakers warned they would march again if President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who took power with the military’s help, “steals” the election.

Mnangagwa has promised a “free, fair and credible” vote and invited Western observers for the first time in nearly two decades, mindful that the West has indicated a fair vote must take place before international sanctions can be lifted. Previous elections have been marked by allegations of fraud and violence.

Nelson Chamisa, the 40-year-old MDC-T party leader who has energized the opposition since the death of longtime opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai in February, said they will not allow elections to go ahead if the vote is not free and fair.

“We will stop all processes until they accept our demands. ... We are prepared to do whatever is necessary,” Chamisa told cheering supporters.

Chanting slogans, the marchers passed through Mnangagwa’s office, where a Cabinet meeting was under way, and presented a petition. They did the same at the electoral commission.

GOMA, April 26, 2018 (Wire News) -- Opposition politicians and activists in the Democratic Republic of Congo have pledged

to defy repression and step up their protests as the troubled country edges towards elections that have been promised by

the president, Joseph Kabila, later this year.

The DRC has been hit by a series of rebellions and outbreaks of communal violence in recent months, with some observers

raising concerns of a slide into anarchy which could destabilise much of the region.

The UN has warned of a dramatic deterioration in the humanitarian situation. More than 4 million people are displaced and at

least 8 million are in the acute stages of hunger. Thousands have died. A donor conference on 13 April was boycotted by the

DRC and raised less than half of the $1.7bn sought by the UN.

Police and national military forces are blamed for widespread human rights abuses. About 50 people have already been

killed in protests this year. According to a recent UN report “state agents” carried out 1,176 killings last year, but the true toll

may be much higher. Security agencies are accused of hiding evidence of further wrongdoing and many witnesses have

been intimidated.

 

Five members of the civil society movement Lutte pour le Changement (LUCHA) were recently detained in the eastern city of

Goma, while many more have experienced systematic harassment. Five protesters and one police officer were injured when

security forces dispersed a protest last month. Alexis Kanane, a former spokesman of the LUCHA in Goma, was shot dead

last month. Campaigners believe he was assassinated.

LUCHA is now planning a new wave of street protests before the end of April.

Kabila, who took power in 2001 after his father was assassinated, ignored the end of his second five year term in 2016.

Aides have said the 46-year-old will not stand again at polls scheduled for December.


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