Tanks seen near Zimbabwe capital but streets calm as political tensions rise

Soldiers stand beside military vehicles just outside Harare, Zimbabwe, November 14, 2017. REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo

HARARE – Armoured vehicles were seen heading towards Harare but the streets of the Zimbabwe capital remained calm, a day after the armed forces chief said he was prepared to “step in” to end a purge of supporters of a vice president sacked last week.

A witness saw two tanks parked beside the main road from Harare to Chinhoyi, about 20 km (14 miles) from the city. One, which was pointed in the direction of the capital, had come off its tracks.

Business continued normally inside the capital and there was no sign of a major military presence on the streets. Hours after the tanks were spotted, state media carried no extraordinary reports. Government officials could not be reached for comment.

Witnesses said they saw four armoured vehicles turn before reaching Harare, heading towards the Presidential Guard compound in a suburb called Dzivarasekwa on the outskirts of Harare.

 “There were about four tanks and they turned right here, you can see markings on the road,” one witness on the Chinhoyi highway said pointing to a road that links up to the Presidential Guard compound that houses the battalion that protects President Robert Mugabe.

Mugabe, the only leader Zimbabwe has known in 37 years of independence, chaired a weekly cabinet meeting in the capital.

Exit mobile version