Mugabe Foe Briefly Arrested Ahead of Rally

Zimbabwe opposition leader rounded up in nighttime raid
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 23, 2008 10:42 AM CST
Vengai Chigaramumba has a close look at the new ten million dollar note introduced by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, Friday, January, 18, 2008. The bank released the new ten million dollar note, which...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Robert Mugabe's main opponent was arrested in the middle of the night ahead of a planned rally today in the Zimbabwean capital of Harare, reports the Mail and Guardian. He was later released without charge. Police have banned Morgan Tsvangirai and his Movement for Democratic Change from holding a demonstration, but the opposition leader has vowed it will go ahead.

Tsvangirai was last arrested in March of last year ahead of another demonstration; he claims that the police beat him, an allegation the government denied. In recent years Zimbabweans have avoided attending demonstrations, fearful of violent reprisals by security forces. Lines to withdraw rapidly depreciating cash have become perpetual sights in Harare; the IMF estimates the inflation rate to be 50,000%.