Zimbabwe election: ZANU-PF wins parliamentary majority, electoral body says

Zimbabwe Elections 2018 A defiant Nelson Chamisa stands by election victory claim

Millions of people voted peacefully on Monday in the first election since the army removed Robert Mugabe from power a year ago.

Global observers from the Commonwealth and elsewhere are urging the release of the presidential results as soon as possible.

Zimbabwean soldiers are circulating in the capital, Harare, and telling vendors and other people to leave the city center by noon.

Opposition leader Nelson Chamisa's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has accused President Emmerson Mnangagwa's Zanu-PF party and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission of using underhand tactics to steal the election from them.

The EU did not understand why the release of the presidential result was taking so long, Brok said.

Soldiers and police fired live rounds, water cannons and tear gas at furious protesters who threw rocks and burned vehicles Wednesday in Zimbabwe's capital, dashing the optimism of an election that the country hoped would set it on a new course after decades of Robert Mugabe's rule.

Armoured personnel carriers ferried troops and riot police to the scene. Gunfire was heard and an army helicopter flew in the skies above Harare, witnesses said.

The opposition "are testing our resolve", he said, "and I think they are making a big mistake". "I was beaten by soldiers", said Norest Kemvo, who had gashes to his face and right hand.

"We are just waiting to see what they will do next since they don't want us in town". They believe the election has been stolen, and are demanding the MDC be announced as victor. Why are the army here beating us?

This was the first time western observers were allowed to monitor the democratic process in Zimbabwe for nearly two decades.

The UN and former colonial power the United Kingdom both expressed concern about the violence, in which three people were killed after troops opened fire.

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If no presidential candidate wins at least 50 percent of the ballots cast in the first round, a run-off vote is scheduled for September 8. "This time we will not allow it, we will fight", said one protester who wore a red MDC beret in central Harare.

Live ammunition was sacked as the Zimbabwe military was brought in to contain the situation.

The ruling Zanu-PF party has won the majority of parliamentary seats.

He added: "The strategy is meant to prepare [Zimbabwe] mentally to accept fake presidential results".

The most important thing for us now is to move beyond yesterday's tragic events, and to move forward, together.

"We won the popular vote and will defend it!" he tweeted.

The EU assessment is critical in determining whether Zimbabwe can fix its image and attract the foreign investors needed for an economic revival.

Though some results in local races have been announced, she said full and official results might not be announced until the weekend.

Mugabe had ruled the country since gaining independence from Britain in 1980.

Opposition supporters had marched to and from the gates of a compound where the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission had been announcing results.

"Opposition parties have never enjoyed the freedom of meeting their supporters the way they have been doing‚ so they have perhaps misinterpreted our understanding to being weak‚" he said.

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