Armed soldiers torture employees of hotel, as incidents of torture increase in March 2006

The month of March saw a rise in the incidents of torture. In an unprecedented incident, on 14 March, armed soldiers and Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) officials reportedly assaulted and tortured 8 employees of a hotel near the Mozambican border in Mutare. They were tortured for allegedly hoarding mealie-meal. The soldiers and the ZIMRA officials did not find the said mealie-meal after conducting a search at the hotel premises.

The Human Rights Forum deplores the torture of these employees and urges the soldiers and ZIMRA officials to allow police officers to investigate and arrest if indeed there are activities outside the law that are taking place anywhere. The Forum further urges all government officials to adhere to international norms on torture, stipulated under the Convention Against Torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment (CAT).

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