Zimbabwe shuts down internet again amid unrest

Pastor and activist Evan Mawarire, centre, is appearing at court Credit: AP

Zimbabwe’s government has again forced a “total internet shutdown” after a violent crackdown on people protesting against fuel price increases, a media group has said.

MISA-Zimbabwe shared a text message from the country’s largest telecoms company, Econet, which said the government order was “beyond our reasonable control”.

The shutdown faces a court challenge from MISA-Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.

Some of the people arrested during protests over the hike in fuel prices. Credit: AP

A prominent pastor and activist who faces a possible 20-year prison term if he is convicted on a subversion charge is set to appear in court again on Friday.

Evan Mawarire called it “heartbreaking” to see the new government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa acting like that of former leader Robert Mugabe.

International calls for restraint are growing, while Mr Mnangagwa prepares to plead for more investment at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.