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Zimbabwe army seizes state TV but denies coup ongoing

Zimbabwe army seizes state TV but denies coup ongoing
From Al Jazeera - November 14, 2017

Zimbabwe's military has seized state TV and blocked off access to government offices in the capital Harare.

In a televised address early on Wednesday morning, military spokesperson, Major General SB Moyo, said the army was seeking to "pacify a degenerating, social, and economic situation" in the country.

Moyo denied that the army was carrying out a coup against President Robert Mugabe's government and said the leader and his family were "safe and sound and their safety is guaranteed".

"We are only targeting criminals around him who are committing crimes that are causing social and economic suffering in the country, in order to bring them to justice" he said, as tanks surrounded parliamentary and presidential buildings.

The army spokesperson said that once the military's objectives have been achieved, the situation in the country would return to normal, before urging Zimbabweans to continue with their lives as usual.

Moyo also called on political parties to "discourage" their members from turning to violence.

"To the youth, we call upon you to realise that the future of the country is yours, do not be enticed by the dirty coins of silver, be disciplined and remain committed to the ethos and values of this great nation."

Al Jazeera's Tania Page, reporting from Johannesburg said the Zimbabwean government had yet to respond to the military takeover.

"Much like everyone else, [the Zimbabwe government is] waiting to hear what the situation is."

'Very tense'

Enock Muchinjo a journalist in Harare, said the situation in the city was "very tense" with troops on patrol in civilian areas.

"The streets are empty and people have not reported to work in fear of what is happening," he said.

Muchinjo said by around 8:30AM (6:30 GMT) people had started "trickling in" to the streets, almost an hour and a half after business normally starts.

"I fear for my small business, my extended family depends on it for a livelihood."

MartinMuradzikwa, shop owner in Harare

Distrust of army

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