A report by the Zimbabwean commission of inquiry says that the military and police were responsible for killing six persons during the post-election protests in the capital in August.
The report was announced by President Emmerson Mnangagwa at a press conference.
The report says, the use of live ammunition, whips and gun butts on protesters was unjustifiable, but the deployment of the military was lawful and “unavoidable” after the police had been overwhelmed by the protesters. The report added that the deployment was necessary to protect lives and property.
It also recommended that the soldiers and police found to have broken their codes of conduct should face internal disciplinary measures.
The report also found that the protests were “pre-planned and orchestrated” and opposition leaders had incited violence.
Military generals who appeared before the commission in November flatly denied that soldiers were responsible for the deaths, including some who were shot in the back.
The incident happened on August 1, when armed soldiers were deployed in the capital, Harare, to suppress a protest against delays in announcing the results of Zimbabwe’s first elections without former ruler Robert Mugabe.
Mnangagwa said that his government will study the report before deciding on its next steps.