Swaziland: Amnesty International Condemns Government's "Alarming" Violence Against Peaceful Protests in Swaziland

Press Release
April 13, 2011

Swaziland: Amnesty International Condemns Government's "Alarming" Violence Against Peaceful Protests in Swaziland

Amnesty International Press Release
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Amnesty International Condemns Government’s “Alarming” Violence Against Peaceful Protests in Swaziland

Contact: Suzanne Trimel, 212-633-4150

(New York) -- Amnesty International today condemned the use by Swaziland authorities of state of emergency-style measures to crush peaceful anti-government protests taking place across the country and urged authorities to return to the rule of law.

"We are alarmed by the levels of state violence in the past 24 hours and the numbers of arbitrary and secret detentions witnessed during this period and fear that those targeted may be at risk of torture," said Amnesty International.

Amnesty International has learned that union leaders who had been released from custody late Tuesday were placed under unlawful house arrest today.

The security forces used excessive force on Tuesday to disperse protesters.

Heavily armed security force members again today besieged the headquarters of the Swaziland National Association of Teachers and are currently conducting a search without a warrant inside the building. Union members and possibly also national and foreign journalists are present. The landlocked country in southern Africa is bordered to the north, south and west by South Africa and to the east by Mozambique.