On Friday, the U.S. embassy in Harare voiced its concern over the failings of Zimbabwe’s police in reducing political violence in the country. Though it recognized the efforts of police officers, prosecutors and other court officials who have worked hard in eradicating corruption and crime, the U.S. embassy is becoming more worried about the officials who exercise political bias.
On September 23, four individuals were allegedly beaten to death by police officers after they were transported from their village by private security guards. There have also been reports by human rights groups that local activists are being harassed and targeted by officers, such as leaders of the group Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA). Extortion and intimidation tactics by politically aligned gangs also seem to be prevalent in Harare.
All of these reports and allegations have caused a stir within the U.S. embassy, who emphasized that such level of corruption will only perpetuate further violence in the country.
The Government of Zimbabwe has made a pledge to uphold and protect human rights and, to show its commitment, it is to appear before the Human Rights Council’s Universal Period Review on October 13. The U.S. embassy states that it wishes for the government to fulfill these promises and show more effort in exercising human rights principles.