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A New President Is 'Humbled,' Opponent Cries Fraud

Emmerson Mnangagwa narrowly won the election in Zimbabwe
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 3, 2018 12:54 AM CDT
Zimbabwe police are seen outside the opposition party headquarters in Harare, Zimbabwe, on Thursday.   (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)
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(Newser) – Zimbabwe's President Emmerson Mnangagwa narrowly won the election there Friday as the ruling party maintained control of the government in the first vote since the fall of Robert Mugabe. Mnangagwa received 50.8% of the vote, while main opposition challenger Nelson Chamisa received 44.3%, but the opposition is almost certain to challenge the results in the courts or in the streets, the AP reports. Zimbabwe's president says he is "humbled" by his win. "This is a new beginning. Let us join hands, in peace, unity & love, & together build a new Zimbabwe for all!" Mnangagwa tweeted, after a week that began with peaceful voting Monday but spiraled into deadly violence Wednesday as the military fired on protesters.

Six people were killed and 14 injured in the violence in the capital, Harare. Western election observers, who were banned in previous votes, have expressed concern at the military's "excessive" force. Their assessments of the election are crucial to the lifting of international sanctions on a country whose economy collapsed years ago. Shortly before the election commission's announcement, Morgen Komichi, the chief agent for Chamisa's opposition alliance, took the stage and said his party "totally rejects" the results and said he had not signed the election results. Police escorted him from the room. Later, Komichi said the elections were "fraudulent" and "everything has been done illegally.

(Read more Emmerson Mnangagwa stories.)

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