Statement of Laurel Bellows, President, American Bar Association, Re: Arrest and Detention of Beatrice Mtetwa and Thabani Mpofu
Human Rights lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa was released on bail by the Zimbabwe High Court on Monday, March 25, thanks to advocacy by many organizations, including the ABA.
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 18, 2013 – The American Bar Association condemns the arrest and detention of lawyers Beatrice Mtetwa and Thabani Mpofu following the March 16 national referendum on a new constitution for Zimbabwe.
President Mugabe should comply with the order of the High Court to release attorney Mtetwa forthwith, and should cease further harassment of political opponents and their representatives exercising their rights under international law.
The eyes of the international legal community are on the Zimbabwe government’s flagrant and deplorable disrespect for the rule of law, the authority of the judiciary of Zimbabwe, and the government’s unwarranted punishment of lawyers trying to protect the rights of Zimbabwe citizens.
(Media contact: Rob Boisseau, 202-662-1093, Robert.Boisseau@americanbar.org)
Please click here for a biography and photo of Laurel G. Bellows, president of the American Bar Association.