This report examines the nature and causes of political violence in Zimbabwe during the period from 1 June 2001 to 30 June 2002, and attempts to identify those who were responsible for it. The report is based on more than 900 victims’ statements. The Human Rights NGO Forum has done what it can to verify these statements and is satisfied that the vast majority of them are substantially true. The Forum believes they must be published in the public interest.
This report has made use of two main sources of information. Just over half of the information is derived from statements given by victims directly to the Legal Unit of the Zimbabwe Human Rights Forum, while the remainder comes from statements obtained by the Forum’s partner organisations. Ninety-five per cent of the cases used in this report are reports made by the victims themselves, either to the Forum or its partner organisations.
Only 1.4 per cent of the victims were politically affiliated to ZANU PF. The rest of the victims were supporters of the opposition MDC; those of unknown political affiliation and those who were apolitical. Victims allege that they were attacked either for being MDC members or supporters or because they were suspected of being MDC supporters. It was both difficult and risky to be apolitical in the period under review.