Politics: Chaos erupts in Zimbabwe's capital amid growing political unrest and rumors of a coup

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Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe

There have been reports of a heavy military presence and explosions in Harere.

  • The Zimbabwean capital Harare erupted in chaos early Wednesday morning local time, with reports of explosions in the city.
  • Soldiers have also taken control of the headquarters of state broadcaster ZBC, according to Reuters.
  • Zimbabwe's ruling party played down the unrest and rumors of a coup hours earlier.

Chaos has erupted in the Zimbabwean capital of Harare.

There were reports of multiple explosions in the city and a heavy presence of armed soldiers in the early hours of Wednesday morning local time. Soldiers have also taken control of the headquarters of state broadcaster ZBC, according to Reuters.

The Associated Press reported seeing armed soldiers assaulting civilians and loading ammunition into military vehicles. At least three explosions were heard near the University of Zimbabwe.

The US Embassy in Zimbabwe has advised all US citizens in Zimbabwe to shelter in place until further notice due to the country's “political uncertainty.”

The US embassy also announced it will be closed on November 15.

The United Kingdom's embassy in Harare issued a similar warning, telling British nationals in the city to “stay safely at home/indoors until the situation becomes clearer.”

Zimbabwe's ruling party downplayed talk of unrest hours earlier. Isaac Moyo, Zimbabwe's ambassador to neighboring South Africa, earlier dismissed talk of a coup, saying the government was “intact” and blaming social media for spreading false information, Reuters said.

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe had earlier accused the head of the military of treason, which led to speculation of a potential coup, Reuters reported.

The wire service said the 93-year-old president's condition was not immediately known. Agence France-Presse cited an unconfirmed report from a resident who said shots were heard near Mugabe's residence.

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