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Under State Pressure, Zimbabwe NGO's Suspend Or Scale Back Operations

More than 20 Zimbabwean non-governmental organizations have either suspended operations or scaled them back due to harassment and intimidation by state security officials and war veterans supporting the ruling ZANU-PF party, sources said.

Organizations under pressure include the Zimbabwe Peace Project and the Zimbabwe Election Support Network, whose chairman, Noel Kututwa, surrendered to police on Monday after a raid Friday on ZESN's offices. He was released after questioning but instructed to return with ZESN National Director Rindai Chipfunde-Vava.

Provincial organizations including the Murehwa Community Trust and the Center for Research and Development in Mutare have suspended their activities.

Center for Research Director Farai Maguwu told reporter Carole Gombakomba of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that his organization drew official ire by focusing on the post-election crisis and calling for the released of long-withheld presidential results.

Advocacy and Communications Officer Fambai Ngirande of the National Association of Non-Governmental Organizations said NANGO is receiving similar reports daily from groups that focus on civic education, human rights and humanitarian needs.

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