Internal police documents show military behind brutal crackdown in Zimbabwe

Internal Zimbabwean police documents have reportedly shown that the military was behind the murder, rape and robbery of citizens during the widespread crackdown.

According to the Guardian.com, the police are afraid of directly linking the country’s powerful military to the brutal crackdown as a result have found ways of reporting on the abuses.

In more than a dozen investigation reports shared with the newspaper by police officials frustrated at the apparent impunity of the military, a series of alleged attacks are described, including two murders, and the rape of a 15-year-old girl.

In official documents, the police have written that men wearing army “uniforms” or “camouflage”, have committed the crimes.

This was a formula that allows police to avoid making direct accusations against the powerful military, said the report.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa had recently expressed outrage on social media over continued state security forces brutality.

Writing on his Twitter account on Monday, Mnangagwa said he was “appalled” by a televised report showing abuses by security forces in a continuing crackdown.

Mnangagwa said he was unhappy at the video, broadcast by Sky News, showing security forces hitting a man who had been arrested.

Mnangagwa said he “instructed that the individuals behind this be arrested.”

Angry protests against the government’s drastic fuel price hikes provoked a harsh crackdown by police and military in which 12 have been killed and 300 wounded, scores by gunshot wounds, according to doctors and rights groups, reported AP.

Long after the protests ended, the military clampdown continues with forces going house to house to carry out arbitrary arrests, beatings, torture, abductions and rapes, according to rights groups.

According to New Zimbabwe.com, opposition parties have since accused the president of being fully aware of the ongoing crackdown by security forces.

The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) spokesperson, Jacob Mafume was quoted saying, the president and his government were “suffering from split personality disorder.”

“One day they smile and the next day they bite, maybe they take their nicknames (Crocodile) literally.”

Other opposition parties said they were also concerned over the continued brutal crackdown.

The MDC party led by Thokozani Khupe said Mnangagwa was out of touch with reality and needed to act fast as the security forces crackdown was widely reported on by local media houses and right groups.

The party’s spokesperson Linda Masarira called on the president to return the military back to its barracks, said the report.