Police in Swaziland (eSwatini) fired gunshots to break up a group of people who were drinking alcohol in the street.
It happened outside a bar called Mdzimba View in Ezulwini on Thursday night (1 April 2021).
Chief Police Information and Communications Officer (PICO) Phindile Vilakati said police fired ‘warning shots’ after the drinkers smashed beer bottles on the road close to the Ezulwini Police Post.
The Swazi Observer reported, ‘Vilakati said the fired shots were just a tactic to ensure that they drive away the rowdy crowd out of the area.’
The bar was told to close for the evening.
Alcohol sales have been restricted in Swaziland in recent months as part of a partial lockdown to deal with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Police in Swaziland, which is ruled by absolute monarch King Mswati III, routinely use guns, water canon and teargas to disperse gatherings, even those that are lawful.
The situation has escalated in recent years that human rights observers believe the Swazi police have a ‘shoot-to-kill’ policy.
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