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Zimbabwe Human Rights


NOV 11: Beatrice Mtetwa and the Rule of Law

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Zimbabweans participated in presidential and parliamentary elections in July 2013. Robert Mugabe was re-elected president for a five year term, and his party, ZANU-PF, regained majority control of Parliament. Amnesty International did not observe human rights violations or violence on polling day, but noted several incidents following the elections tied to activists refusing to reveal their vote.

Amnesty International observed high levels of repression prior to the elections. Since September 2012, nearly every single civil society organization of note in Zimbabwe working on civil, political and human rights issues had their offices raided, or leadership arrested, or both. GALZ (Gay and Lesbian Zimbabwe) faced particular scrutiny and continues to be harassed by police. WOZA (Women of Zimbabwe Arise), a human and civil rights organization dedicated to empowering and educating Zimbabweans to participate in the political process, experienced several incidents of arrest and violence at the hands of the security sector. The most recent incident occurred in February 2014 during their annual Valentine's Day peaceful protest when several activists faced abuse by riot police.

Amnesty International continues to monitor incidents of forced eviction in Zimbabwe, as well as the human rights violations occurring as a result of these displacements. In one informal settlement outside the capital Harare, Amnesty International documented the deaths of infants due to inadequate warmth and sanitation facilities. This needless loss of life caused by poor government policies must be addressed immediately by the government. Additionally, a recent report documented an estimated 220,000 children experienced a disruption to their education as a result of 2005's Operation Murambatsvina, when the Zimbabwe government displaced 700,000 people.

Zimbabwe Newsroom



August 1, 2018 • Press Release

Zimbabwe: Investigate the army’s conduct in post-election killings

Authorities must launch a prompt and effective investigation into the army’s killing of three protesters and injury of scores others following post elections violence, Amnesty International said today.

July 9, 2018 • Report

Zimbabwe: Elections offer a chance to break with decades of gross human rights violations

Zimbabwe’s election at the end of the month will take place in the context of decades of politically motivated gross human rights violations, including mass killings, the forced disappearance of critics and suppression of peaceful protesters, Amnesty International said in a new briefing published today. The briefing, Breaking away from the past: A human rights …

November 21, 2017 • Press Release

Zimbabwe: Post-Mugabe government must open new chapter of respect for rights

Responding to the news that Robert Mugabe has resigned as President of Zimbabwe, Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International said the following:

November 9, 2017 • Press Release

Zimbabwe must drop absurd charges over Mugabe tweet

In response to a Zimbabwean court’s decision to grant bail to Martha O’Donovan, a US citizen who was detained last week after being accused of insulting President Robert Mugabe, Amnesty International Zimbabwe Executive Director Cousin Zilala said: “Martha O’Donovan should not have spent a single night in jail – expressing an opinion in a tweet is not a crime. Her arrest was the latest example of the Zimbabwean’s authorities’ utter contempt for freedom of expression.

April 19, 2017 • Press Release

Amnesty International statement ahead of court appearance of Zimbabwean activist Evan Mawarire

The continued persecution of human rights activist Pastor Evan Mawarire is a deliberate ploy by the Zimbabwean authorities to harass, intimidate and, ultimately, silence him, Amnesty International said today ahead of his court appearance on April 21, 2017.

September 7, 2016 • Press Release

Zimbabwe: Allow public demonstrations as per court ruling

The government of Zimbabwe must respect a court ruling overturning the ban on protests in the country, Amnesty International said today, as the High Court issued its verdict allowing public demonstrations. “Today’s High court decision is a victory for Zimbabwe’s constitutional principles. It sends a clear message to the authorities that the right to protest, …

August 26, 2016 • Press Release

Zimbabwe: Investigate fate and whereabouts of disappeared pro-democracy activist

The continued failure of Zimbabwe’s authorities to launch an effective investigation into the enforced disappearance of pro-democracy activist, Itai Dzamara, sends a chilling message about the security of other government critics, said Amnesty International today marking the International Day of the Disappeared. “The absolute failure of the police to account for the enforced disappearance of …

April 19, 2016 • Press Release

Zimbabwe: Deplorable attack on brother of missing activist must be urgently investigated

The brutal assault by Zimbabwe's state security agents on the brother of the abducted pro-democracy activist Itai Dzamara must be urgently and impartially investigated and those responsible brought to justice, Amnesty International said today.

February 22, 2016 • Press Release

Amnesty International’s Annual State of the World Report Slams Governments, Including the U.S., for Global Assault on Freedoms

On the launch of its 2015 State of the World report, Amnesty International USA urged President Obama to use his last year in office to bring U.S. laws and policies in line with international human rights standards.

February 18, 2016 • Press Release

Your rights in jeopardy, global assault on freedoms, warns Amnesty International

International protection of human rights is in danger of unravelling as short-term national self-interest and draconian security crackdowns have led to a wholesale assault on basic freedoms and rights, warned Amnesty International as it launched its annual assessment of human rights around the world. “Your rights are in jeopardy: they are being treated with utter contempt by many governments around the world,” said Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International.