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Lineages of the Absolutist State

Lineages of the Absolutist State

By Perry Anderson

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Ear to the Ground

Mugabe Plays Politics ... With Everything

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Posted on Jun 4, 2008
Mugabs and Tsvangs
Agence France-Presse / Alexander Joe

Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai (right) outpolled President Robert Mugabe (left) in a March 29 election but failed to win the absolute majority needed to avoid a runoff.

From detaining his opponent while in the middle of a runoff election campaign to suspending international aid operations due to groups’ alleged bias against the government, Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe has stopped at nothing to keep himself in power.

Many aid and human rights workers claim the recent ban on helping the country’s most vulnerable people is an attempt to prevent international groups from witnessing violence against opposition supporters by Mugabe’s secret police.


Zimbabwe’s opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai was detained on Wednesday as he campaigned for a presidential election run-off, his party said.

“It appears they want to disrupt our campaign program,” said Tsvangirai’s spokesman, George Sibotshiwe.

The MDC said Tsvangirai’s four-vehicle convoy was stopped at a roadblock manned by police and members of President Robert Mugabe’s feared Central Intelligence Organisation. He was held at a rural police station southwest of Harare.

[Reuters reported Wednesday night that Tsvangirai had been released after being held for more than eight hours.]

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