Friday, 3 September 2010

Maputo burning

Some familiar streets on GMTV this morning. The news that more than 7 people have died in Mozambique's capital Maputo in the last two days took me by surprise.

When the first images came in, I had to think of a trip I made to the Southern African country - one of the world's poorest - several years ago; where have the days gone you could walk around Maputo freely, sit on the beach till dawn and play table football with some locals?

MOZAMBIQUE'S capital MAPUTO endured a second day of deadly rioting over rising food prices as the United Nations warned that the effects of a global spike in the cost of staples would hit the world's poor the hardest.

Shops were looted, cars set ablaze, roads barricaded and one of the Maputo protesters killed, bringing the death toll to seven after two days of violence prompted by soaring bread prices. One of the dead was a six-year-old girl on her way home from school. Youths have blocked roads with burning tyres. Troops have been deployed to restore order.

The US State Department and the UK Foreign Office have urged their citizens to avoid all unnecessary travel and remain at your residence/hotel, especially after dusk. The US and UK Embassies will only provide emergency ervices. All non-emergency embassy employees remain excused from duty.

downtown Maputo
central Maputo
Sunrise in Maputo, seen from the north
in front of the Maputo train station, built by the Portuguese
Sjoerd found it hard to say no
going back to South Africa

Mozambique yesterday and today

Mozambique yesterday (picture BBC)
Maputo 2 Sept 2010,