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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
00HARARE5515
2000-09-28 15:20:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Harare
Cable title:  

COMMERCIAL FARMER SEVERELY INJURED WITH

Tags:   PGOV  PHUM  EAGR  PREL  EAID  ZI 
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281520Z Sep 00


                           CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ7576

PAGE 01        HARARE  05515  01 OF 02  281517Z 
ACTION AF-00    

INFO  LOG-00   NP-00    AGRE-00  AID-00   AMAD-00  ACQ-00   CIAE-00  
      DODE-00  SRPP-00  DS-00    EB-00    EUR-00   VC-00    FRB-00   
      H-01     TEDE-00  INR-00   IO-00    L-00     VCE-00   AC-01    
      NSAE-00  OIC-02   OMB-01   OPIC-01  PA-00    PM-00    PRS-00   
      ACE-00   P-00     SP-00    STR-00   USIE-00  PMB-00   DSCC-00  
      PRM-01   DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00  SAS-00   SWCI-00    /009W
                  ------------------8AFEB1  281518Z /38    
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7229
INFO NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
USDOC WASHDC
SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 005515 

SIPDIS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH
USDOC FOR DHENKE-ROGERS
LONDON FOR CGURNEY
PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS
PASS USAID FOR AFR/SD - DWELLER, AFR/SA - CPALMA,
NNEWMAN, AA/AFR - VNEWTON, AND A/AID - RMCCALL

USTR FOR ROSA WHITAKER

E.O. 12958: DECL 09/28/2010
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 HARARE 05515 01 OF 02 281517Z
TAGS: PGOV PHUM EAGR PREL EAID ZI
SUBJECT: COMMERCIAL FARMER SEVERELY INJURED WITH
MACHETE.


CLASSIFIED BY DCM EARL IRVING FOR REASONS 1.5 (B) AND
(D).



1. (C) SUMMARY: A WHITE COMMERCIAL FARMER WAS ATTACKED
WITH A MACHETE BY A WAR VETERAN ON SEPTEMBER 26 AFTER
THE VETERAN TRIED TO STOP HIM FROM PLANTING TOBACCO.
THE FARMER SUFFERED A DEEP GASH ACROSS HIS FACE AND
NOSE, AND WAS RUSHED TO THE HOSPITAL, WHERE HE IS
RECOVERING FOLLOWING SURGERY. THIS INCIDENT IS
INDICATIVE OF RISING TENSIONS ON COMMERCIAL FARMS, WHERE
CONFRONTATIONS BETWEEN OCCUPYING WAR VETERANS AND FARM
WORKERS HAVE BEEN TAKING PLACE. POLICE REACTION HAS
BEEN LESS THAN PROFESSIONAL IN MANY CASES, ALTHOUGH THE
FORCE NOW HAS ORDERS TO PREVENT FURTHER OCCUPATIONS.
THE COMING RAINY SEASON WILL BRING A NEW DIMENSION TO
FARM TENSION -- BETWEEN WAR VETERANS AND THE GOVERNMENT,
WHICH TO DATE HAS FAILED TO DELIVER ON ITS PROMISE OF
LAND TO THIS ROUGH CONSTITUENCY. END SUMMARY.



--------------------------


THE ATTACK


--------------------------





2. (C) ACCORDING TO RICHARD AMYOT OF THE COMMERCIAL
FARMERS UNION (CFU), A WHITE COMMERCIAL FARMER WAS
BRUTALLY ATTACKED BY A WAR VETERAN WITH A MACHETE ON
SEPTEMBER 26. THE ATTACK OCCURRED IN KAROI, A FARMING
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 HARARE 05515 01 OF 02 281517Z
DISTRICT 200 KM NORTH OF HARARE, A REGION TORN BY LAND-
RELATED VIOLENCE SINCE EARLY THIS YEAR. AMYOT TOLD
ECONOFF THAT THE FARMER, MARSHALL ROPER, HAD BEGUN TO
PLANT TOBACCO ON HIS FARM, WHICH HAD BEEN OCCUPIED BY
SO-CALLED WAR VETERANS FOR SEVERAL MONTHS. TWELVE
SQUATTERS APPROACHED ROPER AND TOLD HIM HE COULD NOT
PLANT. A HEATED DISCUSSION ENSUED, AND A WAR VETERAN
WITH A MACHETE SWUNG AND STRUCK ROPER IN THE FACE,
CAUSING A DEEP GASH ACROSS HIS CHEEKS AND NOSE. ROPER
FIRED A PISTOL INTO THE AIR IN SELF-DEFENSE AFTER
COLLAPSING ON THE GROUND. THE WAR VETERANS THEN FLED.
AMYOT BELIEVES ROPER WOULD HAVE BEEN KILLED IF HE HAD
NOT BEEN ARMED. THE POLICE HAVE ARRESTED FOUR PEOPLE
INVOLVED IN THE INCIDENT, BUT THEY ARE REPORTEDLY STILL
LOOKING FOR ROPER'S ATTACKER. A PHOTOGRAPH OF THE
SEVERELY WOUNDED ROPER APPEARED ON THE FRONT PAGE OF THE
SEPTEMBER 27 EDITION OF THE INDEPENDENT "DAILY NEWS",
SPARKING WIDESPREAD DISGUST AND INDIGNATION IN HARARE.
MINISTER OF JUSTICE JONATHAN MOYO AND ZANU-PF SPOKESMAN
NATHAN SHAMUYARIRA BOTH EXPRESSED REGRET AT THE INCIDENT
AND PROMISED A FULL INVESTIGATION.



--------------------------


NOT AN ISOLATED INCIDENT


--------------------------





3. (C) AMYOT STATED THAT THE ATTACK ON ROPER WAS NOT AN
ISOLATED INCIDENT. ROPER AND MANY OTHER FARMERS IN
OTHER REGIONS HAVE RECEIVED NUMEROUS THREATS OVER THE
LAST WEEKS. THE PREVIOUS WEEK, A GROUP OF COMMERCIAL
FARMERS, FED UP WITH THE FARM INVASIONS, LACK OF POLICE
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 04 HARARE 05515 01 OF 02 281517Z
INTERVENTION, AND A NEED TO BEGIN PLANTING, BLOCKED A
ROAD IN THE CHIVHU FARM DISTRICT IN CENTRAL ZIMBABWE
WITH A BARRIER TO KEEP WAR VETERANS AND OTHER FARM
INVADERS FROM INTERRUPTING THEIR PLANTING OPERATIONS.
THIS LED TO A CONFRONTATION BETWEEN THE FARMERS AND
THEIR WORKERS ON ONE SIDE, AND, ON THE OTHER, WAR
VETERANS, INCLUDING, ACCORDING TO AMYOT, PLAINCLOTHES
POLICEMEN AND/OR AGENTS FROM THE CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE
ORGANIZATION (CIO). THE WAR VETERANS SHOT AT THE
FARMERS WITH MILITARY-STYLE ASSAULT WEAPONS AND THE
FARMERS FIRED BACK, BUT NO ONE WAS HURT. POLICE
ARRESTED FOUR OF THE FARMERS AND SEVERAL FARM WORKERS
AND TOOK THEM TO THE LOCAL STATION. A GROUP OF
COMMERCIAL FARMERS AND THEIR FARM WORKERS, NUMBERING IN
THE THOUSANDS, CONVERGED ON THE STATION TO SUCCESSFULLY
DEMAND THE RELEASE OF THEIR COLLEAGUES AND TO PROTEST
THE GENERAL BREAKDOWN OF LAW AND ORDER IN THE AREA.



--------------------------

-
CONFUSION REIGNS REGARDING THE ROLE OF THE ZRP


--------------------------

-



4. (C) AMYOT SAID THAT POLICE REACTIONS TO INCIDENTS ON
THE FARMS HAVE VARIED FROM REGION TO REGION. SENIOR

CONFIDENTIAL

CONFIDENTIAL PTQ7577

PAGE 01 HARARE 05515 02 OF 02 281517Z
ACTION AF-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 AGRE-00 AID-00 AMAD-00 ACQ-00 CIAE-00
DODE-00 SRPP-00 DS-00 EB-00 EUR-00 VC-00 FRB-00
H-01 TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 L-00 VCE-00 AC-01
NSAE-00 OIC-02 OMB-01 OPIC-01 PA-00 PM-00 PRS-00
ACE-00 P-00 SP-00 STR-00 USIE-00 PMB-00 DSCC-00
PRM-01 DRL-02 G-00 NFAT-00 SAS-00 /009W


--------------------------

8AFEB7 281518Z /38
P 281520Z SEP 00
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7230
INFO NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
USDOC WASHDC
SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 02 HARARE 005515

SIPDIS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH
USDOC FOR DHENKE-ROGERS
LONDON FOR CGURNEY
PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS
PASS USAID FOR AFR/SD - DWELLER, AFR/SA - CPALMA,
NNEWMAN, AA/AFR - VNEWTON, AND A/AID - RMCCALL

USTR FOR ROSA WHITAKER

E.O. 12958: DECL 09/28/2010
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 HARARE 05515 02 OF 02 281517Z
TAGS: PGOV PHUM EAGR PREL EAID ZI
SUBJECT: COMMERCIAL FARMER SEVERELY INJURED WITH
MACHETE.

POLICE OFFICIALS, ACCORDING TO AMYOT, HAVE INFORMED THE
CFU THAT THEY WILL ACTIVELY PREVENT FURTHER OCCUPATIONS
AND DISRUPTIONS TO NORMAL FARMING OPERATIONS. POLICE
COMMANDERS IN SOME AREAS ARE ABIDING BY THIS ORDER
WHILE, IN OTHER REGIONS, THEY DO NOTHING TO STOP ILLEGAL
ACTIVITIES BY SQUATTERS OR, IN SOME CASES, EVEN ACTIVELY
PARTICIPATE IN THEM.



5. (C) COMMENT: VIOLENT CONFRONTATIONS BETWEEN FARMERS
AND WAR VETERANS MAY ESCALATE IN THE COMING WEEKS, AS
FARMERS TRY TO MOVE FORWARD WITH PLANTING BEFORE THE
ONSET OF RAINS IN NOVEMBER, AND WAR VETERANS TRY TO
BLOCK THEM. INFORMATION MINISTER MOYO AND ZANU-PF HAD
LITTLE CHOICE BUT TO CONDEMN THE ATTACK ON ROPER. THEY
REITERATED THAT NO NEW FARM OCCUPATIONS OR INTERFERENCE
WITH FARMING ACTIVITIES WOULD BE PERMITTED, HOWEVER,
THEY ALSO CONTINUED TO SUPPORT THE LEGITIMACY OF THE
OCCUPATIONS AS ON-GOING POLITICAL "DEMONSTRATIONS". THE
GOZ HAS BEEN MAKING THESE PLEDGES FOR SOME TIME, BUT NEW
OCCUPATIONS AND ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES CONTINUE, RAISING
QUESTIONS ABOUT WHETHER THE GOZ IS LOSING CONTROL OVER
THE WAR VETERANS. THIS RELATIONSHIP BEARS CLOSE
MONITORING AS WELL, AS THE RAINS DRAW NEARER, AND THE
GOVERNMENT FINDS ITSELF WITH INCREASINGLY LESS ROOM TO
MANEUVER. END COMMENT.

MCDONALD
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 HARARE 05515 02 OF 02 281517Z

CONFIDENTIAL

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