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Zambia

Yearbook 1997

1997 ZambiaZambia. According to Countryaah, the assistance that the Western countries received in 1996 was resumed in July. The reason was that donor countries seemed to see democratic progress in Zambia. Among other things, negotiations between the government and three opposition parties - held in Stockholm - resulted in a declaration stating that the democratic process would continue. The mood between the government and the opposition had been bad since May 1996, when a controversial constitutional change was implemented. Among other things, was demanded that the parents of the presidential candidates be born in Zambia, which means that former President Kenneth Kaunda cannot be candidated because his parents are born in Malawi.

In August, Kaunda accused the government of being behind the gunfire he was exposed to at a political meeting. However, the government denied this and the vice president promised to investigate the matter. Zambia was subjected to a coup attempt in October. A group called the National Rescue Council announced through the state-controlled radio that the army had deposed President Chiluba and taken over the leadership of the country. Five hours later, the president spoke from the same radio station announcing that the nightly coup attempt had failed. He also thanked the country's army for its loyalty to the elected government. President Chiluba immediately freed the opposition from involvement in the coup attempt despite the fact that a week earlier Kaunda had predicted that the country was close to a political explosion.

1997 Zambia

Exception laws were introduced throughout the country after the coup attempt and the police were given unlimited powers to arrest suspects. A few days after the coup, opposition politician Dean Mung'omba, Zambia Democratic Congress (ZADECO) was arrested. Amnesty International appealed to the country's government not to use the coup attempt as a pretext to arrest opponents. In December, however, Kaunda was also accused of being behind the coup attempt. Following appeals from the presidents of Tanzania and Zimbabwe, he was removed from prison and placed under house arrest. Kaunda then broke the hunger strike he initiated when he was imprisoned.

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