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Abusers of Zimbabwean National Flag Risk Jail Term

Zimbabweans risk imprisonment for abusing the national flag, the authorities have warned in the wake of anti-government protests, BBC reports.

Those who bring it into disrepute face a $200 (£154) fine and/or six months in jail, the justice ministry said.

Nobody is allowed to sell the flag without prior permission from the ministry, its statement added.

The flag is being used as a symbol of the calls for change by protesters under the #ThisFlag movement.

It was started in April by a pastor who wrapped a flag around his neck and in a video posted on Facebook calling for Zimbabweans who were fed up with the perceived mismanagement of the country to stand up for themselves.

Evan Mawarire’s social-media movement backed a stay-away campaign in July, the biggest strike action since 2005.

He was accused of attempting to overthrow the government but a court dismissed the charges.

At his court appearance he was draped in the flag, as were many of his supporters.

He since fled the country and is currently in New York where he posted a video on Facebook on Tuesday, again wearing the flag around his neck, protesting outside the UN headquarters. President Robert Mugabe is in New York to attend the UN General Assembly.

 

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