08.08.18

Sen. Coons condemns post-election security crackdown in Zimbabwe

WILMINGTON - U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement on reports of violent government-sponsored attacks in Zimbabwe since the elections on July 30. 

“I am watching the situation in Zimbabwe very closely, and I am concerned about reports of arbitrary arrests, detentions, and government-sponsored violence. These tactics have no place in a democracy, and the government must ensure they stop immediately. 

“Any disagreements over last month’s election should be dealt with through fair and open investigations, hearings, and legal processes. I am particularly alarmed to hear that members of the MDC alliance have been detained by government-backed security forces. Reports of the detention of Tendai Biti at the Zambian border are especially unnerving. The U.S. Senate will hold the government of Zimbabwe responsible for ensuring Mr. Biti and other detainees are not harmed in any way. I also call upon the Trump Administration, the U.S. State Department, the governments of Zimbabwe, Zambia and other regional actors to stand against politically motivated arrests and to support and promote the rule of law. 

“The people of Zimbabwe have suffered through such tactics of repression and intimidation for decades. Last month’s election was supposed to offer them something different. It is not too late for the leaders of Zimbabwe to restore the sense of hope and fairness that its people deserve.”

###

 

Press Contact

Sean Coit at 202-224-5042 or Sean_Coit@coons.senate.gov