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World Briefing / Zimbabwe

Judge revokes bail of 18 opposition activists

May 06, 2009|From Times Wire Reports

A judge revoked the bail of a prominent Zimbabwean rights activist and 17 other suspects after prosecutors formally charged them in a terrorism case that has been widely denounced as a sham.

Activist Jestina Mukoko appeared stunned as she heard the ruling from the dock. Mukoko and the others have said they were tortured during an earlier stint in prison.

The suspects had been free on bail for two months. The magistrate said she was sending them back to prison because a formal indictment filed this week accused Mukoko and the others of sabotage, terrorism and banditry.

The charges stem from an alleged plot to overthrow President Robert Mugabe. Neighboring governments have said they believe the allegations are baseless, and Mugabe opponents say the charges were fabricated to justify a clampdown on dissent.

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