Mugabe supporters "beyond the reach of the law": Amnesty

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Harare, Feb 12 (ANI): A Human rights organisation has warned that supporters of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe have gone "beyond the reach of the law" raising fears among citizens ahead of elections in the country.

Amnesty International said that two years after a coalition government was sworn in, police are selectively applying the law, "turning a blind eye to violations by ZANU-PF supporters".

"Concrete reforms of the security sector are urgently needed before the next elections are held. The security apparatus that instigated the 2008 political violence is still intact," The Scotsman quoted Amnesty International's Director for Africa, Erwin van der Borght, as saying.

The warnings came after Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa had alleged that Mugabe would not accept the terms of the coalition deal and instead would call for elections without a new constitution in place, the paper said.

The paper quoted Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai as saying that a surge in violence launched last month has displaced over 1,000 families, while dozens others have been arrested, beaten, and taken for interrogations.

Dozens have been arrested, beaten and taken in for questioning by police making no attempt to hide their allegiance to Mugabe, who has been in power here for the past 31 years.

Mugabe's militia had killed 200 supporters of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) after the President lost the first round of elections in 2008.

Suspected state agents had reportedly raided offices of the Zimbabwe Youth Forum earlier this week, the biggest supporters of the MDC, pressurising them to reveal why the rights group was urging young people to register for the elections. (ANI)

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