Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa invited opposition leaders to a meeting on Wednesday to draw up terms for a national dialogue following a brutal crackdown on anti-government protests.
More than 20 politicians who contested July’s presidential election were invited, two of whom said they would attend. It would be the first meeting between Mnangagwa and opponents since he took power from Robert Mugabe in November 2017.
On Tuesday, a nationwide strike by public sector teachers for better pay got off to a patchy start, as some stayed at home while others attended school but did not teach amid fears of further intimidation.
The president hiked fuel costs by 150 percent last month and immediately travelled abroad, triggering unrest that drew a violent response from security forces and eventually persuaded him to cut short his foreign tour. The southern African nation is mired in an economic crisis marked by soaring inflation and shortages of cash, fuel and medicines. Many government workers are demanding wage rises and payments in dollars to compensate.