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Mozambique’s Minister of Justice, Constitutional and Religious Affairs has denied that Mozambique’s Defence and Security Forces are committing human rights abuses in the fight against armed groups in northern Mozambique.
“We respect those who say that [there are abuses], but we have never had any proof of these accusations,” Joaquim Verissimo told Lusa on the sidelines of the presentation of the new auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Maputo, António Juliasse.
Veríssimo said that any human rights violations committed by the Defence and Security Forces will meet a response by the authorities within the law.
“If there is a concrete case, it will be taken care of in the proper forum, in a timely manner and within the law,” he stressed.
The minister pointed out that the Mozambican government was committed to consolidating the democratic rule of law and guaranteeing fundamental freedoms.
National and international human rights organisations have expressed concern about the violation of human rights by the Defence and Security Forces in their response to the attacks that have been carried out by armed groups in some districts of the northern province of Cabo Delgado of Mozambique since October 2017.
More than 100 people, including civilians, members of the Defence and Security Forces and members of the insurgent groups, have been killed in the violence, which affects districts close to the areas where natural gas is being developed in Cabo Delgado.
Two journalists are currently being detained in the province accused of violating state secrecy and public instigation, in the context of the violence in the province.
The United Nations and human rights organisations have already expressed concern about the situation.Source: Lusa