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Motive Still Unclear In Johannesburg Shooting Of Zimbabwean Editor

Editor Abel Mutsakani of ZimOnline, a South African-based Web-based news agency specializing in Zimbabwe, said Wednesday that he is still puzzled as to what motivated his shooting last month by three assailants outside his Johannesburg home.

Shot in the arm and the chest July 23, Mutsakani still has a bullet lodged near his heart – surgeons concluded it would be too dangerous to remove the slug.

It remains unclear whether there was a political motive in the shooting: ZimOnline is a leading provider of news on Zimbabwe's political crisis and economic collapse. Agents of the country's feared Central Intelligence Organization have been known to threaten or take violent action against members of the Zimbabwean emigré community.

Mutsakani is the former editor of Harare’s daily newspaper, which along with the Daily News on Sunday was shut down by the Zimbabwean government in 2003.

But it could have been one of the random violent crimes that have become so common in sprawling Johannesburg and other South African cities. The national police reported 19,202 murders and 20,142 attempted murders last year. .

In an interview with reporter Carole Gombakomba of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe, Mutsakani said there has been no breakthrough in the investigation being pursued by police in Johannesburg, leaving the motive for his shooting a mystery.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...