Attack on LGBT group in Zimbabwe; police to the rescue

GALZ website
GALZ website

A group of young men, apparently acting as a youth militia for an unidentified anti-gay organization, attacked the offices of Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) today, threatened staff members with hammers, ransacked the offices and locked up the staff.

In contrast to last year, when police raided the group’s offices and arrested GALZ members, this time the police responded to a call for help, entered the offices and arrested the attackers. GALZ applauded the police for their action.

Here is the GALZ account of the incident:

Youth attempt to attack and ransack GALZ offices

At around 11 am on Thursday [June 6] five unknown men wielding hammers violently forced entry into the GALZ offices disrupting a meeting in progress.

One of the men disguised as a mentally challenged person, threatened the security personnel manning the gate with a Hammer whilst a visitor was driving into the GALZ premises.

The men rounded up all staff and board members and locked them up in the Guard Room whilst they ransacked the offices collecting all personal property including cellphones, laptops and bags.

Harare Central Police Station
Harare Central Police Station

We commend the Police’s swift reaction that arrived at the scene and promptly arrested the men. The men have now been taken away for further questioning by the Police at Harare Central Police Station. One of our board members is currently at Harare Central Police Station assisting the Police. All members present at the office were unharmed and one cellphone and some cash belonging to a board member is allegedly missing.

We are not taking this incident as a random act of attempted robbery but that of youth militia acting on someone’s orders. The men were constantly making communication with an individual addressed as “Machacha” of an unknown “security wing” over the phone.

We applaud the conduct of the Zimbabwe Republic Police in apprehending these men that were bent on creating a situation of lawlessness in Zimbabwe.

We condemn all acts of violence and theft and implore the Police to deal with all proponents of violence.

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at [email protected]

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