A spate of kidnappings in the Mozambican capital, alleged police involvement in organized crime and routine harassment of foreigners are giving Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi what he describes as sleepless nights.
The suspected kidnapping of a man last week in the capital, Maputo, was the ninth this year — after 30 last year.
Nyusi, who took office in January, has indicated that he has had enough.
“The news of police [officers] who join the ranks of the criminals, particularly when I am told that they have the necessary training so as not to commit the crimes they have embraced, deprives me of sleep,” he said when he addressed a parade last month in Maputo marking the 40th anniversary of the creation of the Mozambican police force.
Nyusi is planning to replace state police General Commander Jorge Khalau and is expected to tap Jose Weng San, head of the border protection unit, to take over, the Maputo-based Savana newspaper reported on May 29.
Police spokesman Pedro Cossa declined to comment by telephone on Friday last week.
“Expect changes in the leadership of intelligence and police units,” Nigel Morgan, executive chairman at risk management agency Focus Africa, said in an interview in Maputo. “The real irritant to foreigners is the persistent harassment by police. It is not just tourists — visiting [businesspeople] and foreign embassies are tired of them, too.”
Even a record seizure of poached ivory and rhino horn valued at US$19 million on May 12 has turned into an embarrassment. Police admitted two weeks later that at least 12 of 65 rhino horns had disappeared from guarded storerooms.
Police have yet to contradict reports that all the rhino horns have vanished. At least four officers have been detained since the bounty — which would have required the deaths of at least 235 animals — started to go missing.
“When policemen are caught in the gangs trafficking in rhinoceros horns, elephant tusks and various drugs, or facilitate these same crimes, I am unable to sleep,” the state-run AIM news agency quoted Nyusi as saying at the police parade.
An Australian university student who has never visited China and has only a modest social media following would seem an unlikely target for the Chinese government. However, when a Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman personally denounced Drew Pavlou at a news conference, it was just the next phase in an extraordinary campaign against the 21-year-old that has fueled concerns over China’s targeting of critics overseas. Pavlou first placed himself in the superpower’s sights when in July last year he organized a small sit-in at the University of Queensland, where he studies, to protest against various Chinese government policies. Since then, the Global
‘ASKED TO MOVE OUT’: Indonesian coast guard personnel argued with a Chinese vessel over territorial claims after it entered the country’s exclusive economic zone An Indonesian patrol ship confronted a Chinese coast guard vessel that spent almost three days in waters where Indonesia claims economic rights and that are near the southernmost part of China’s disputed claims to the South China Sea. The Indonesian Maritime Security Agency on Friday night detected Chinese ship 5204 entering Indonesia’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in what Indonesia calls the North Natuna Sea. The agency sent a patrol ship that closed within 1km of the Chinese coast guard vessel and they communicated to affirm their position and their nation’s claims to the area, Indonesian Maritime Security Agency head Aan Kurnia said. “We
BEFORE WINTER COMES: Snow cuts off roads into Ladakh for four months or more each year, so the crunch is on to get food, tents and high-altitude equipment to Leh From deploying mules to large transport aircraft, the Indian military has activated its entire logistics network to transport supplies to thousands of troops for a harsh winter along a bitterly disputed Himalayan border with China. In the past few months, one of India’s biggest military logistics exercises in years has brought vast quantities of ammunition, equipment, fuel, winter supplies and food into Ladakh, a region bordering Tibet that India administers as a union territory, officials said. The move was triggered by a border standoff with China in the snow deserts of Ladakh that began in May and escalated in June into hand-to-hand
Dark matter, mysterious invisible stuff that makes up most of the mass of galaxies, including the Milky Way, is confounding scientists again, with new observations of distant galaxies conflicting with the current understanding of its nature. Research published this week revealed an unexpected discrepancy between observations of dark matter concentrations in three massive clusters of galaxies encompassing trillions of stars and theoretical computer simulations of how dark matter should be distributed. “Either there is a missing ingredient in the simulations or we have made a fundamental incorrect assumption about the nature of dark matter,” Yale University astrophysicist Priyamvada Natarajan, a coauthor of