Military on streets near Zimbabwe capital as treason claims fly

HARARE- Armoured vehicles were spotted on the streets near the capital city of Zimbabwe, Harare, as questions mounted on Wednesday as to whether President Robert Mugabe still has a firm grip on power. Mugabe has rules since the country’s independence from Britain.
Tensions between the president and the military that has been a key buttress to his reign have intensified. Zanu-PF accused army chief General Constantino Chiwega on Tuesday of “treasonable conduct” for challenging Mugabe over the sacking of the vice president.
This public dispute has presented a major test for Mugabe, in which Chiwega had demanded that Mugabe stop purges of senior party figures including vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, who was dismissed last week.
“Chiwega’s stance was clearly calculated to disturb national peace… and suggests treasonable conduct on his part as this was meant to incite insurrection,” Zanu-PF said.
Mnangagwa clashed with the first lady of Zimbabwe, Grace Mugabe, before he was ousted.
As the situation deteriorated on the ground, the US embassy in Harare has made warnings to its citizens in the country to “shelter in place” to ongoing political uncertainty.
President Mugabe is the oldest head of state, but his frail health has fuelled a bitter succession battle as potential replacements jockey for the position, which include his wife Grace Mugabe.

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