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Zimbabwe arrests MDC's Tendai Biti 'at Zambia border'

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A senior member of Zimbabwe's opposition MDC Alliance, Tendai Biti, has been arrested at the border with Zambia, his lawyer says.

Police accuse Mr Biti of inciting violence following last month's election - the first since long-time ruler Robert Mugabe was ousted.

Six people were killed after the military intervened to curb protests in the capital, Harare.

The MDC Alliance alleges the presidential poll was rigged.

But the electoral commission disputes this and says that incumbent President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who took over from Mr Mugabe, won the election.

He took 50.8% of the votes cast - ensuring by only 36,464 ballots that there did not have to be a run-off.

The opposition says that its candidate, Nelson Chamisa, was the victor and that the results were massaged

Mr Biti was trying cross into Zambia to seek asylum, his lawyer Nqobizitha Mlilo said.

He is the first senior politician to be arrested following July's election - and was minister of finance in a unity government formed after disputed elections in 2008.

Mr Biti is credited with helping stabilise the economy after years of hyperinflation.

His arrest warrant, seen by the BBC, says that Mr Biti "unlawfully" announced that Mr Chamisa had won the presidential election.

Altogether the police are hunting for nine senior opposition officials.

July's elections were intended to set Zimbabwe on a new democratic path after the end of Mr Mugabe's 37-year rule last November.

Source : BBC



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