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Mozambique police 'implicated in election observer killing'

MOZAMBIQUE’S elite police force have been implicated in the murder of a prominent election observer just days before the country goes to the polls.

Anastacio Matavel was shot dead after five men armed with assault rifles opened fire as he left an election training session in the southern Gaza province on Monday.

The getaway car crashed, with two people killed and one arrested by the police. Two more assailants remain at large.

Authorities said yesterday that four of the five men in the car belonged to an elite police unit known as the rapid intervention force.

Human Rights Watch described Mr Matavel’s killing as “a chilling development that casts a dark shadow over the Mozambican elections.”

The group said serious abuses and acts of violence have been documented in Gaza province since the start of the election campaign on August 31.

Police have opened investigations into the killing with presidential and parliamentary elections set to take place next Tuesday.

Incumbent President Filipe Nyusi  of the Mozambique Liberation Front is vying for a second five-year term against Mozambican National Resistance candidate Ossufo Momade.

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