Army deployed in Tsvangirai's village

Buhera, – Soldiers deployed here at the beginning of the festive season, stunned villagers when they told them that they were trained to kill.\r\n

Villagers near Sungura shopping centre who confirmed living in fear said they were frightened by the message.

“What surprises us is that we are not in a war and yet we see soldiers here promising to kill us for no apparent reason. For almost a week now, about 15 soldiers led by retired colonel Magirazi were camping near Chadzire Bridge in ward 20," said a villager.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai also comes from nearby villages.

“They (soldiers) call for rallies from time to time,” said a villager.

“We are not sure of what tomorrow will bring us. We live in fear that we may be beaten or even killed. We do not know the meaning of these threats,” said another villager.

Manicaland police spokesperson Inspector Brian Makomeke said anyone who feels that he or her life was put under threat by the ‘suspected soldiers’ should make a police report.

“We normally encourage villagers to make police reports whenever they think that their lives are in danger,” said Insp Makomeke.

Retired Colonel Magirazi could not be reached for comment.

Meanwhile, Zanu (PF) has since started campaigning for Custon Mukurunge to be their next member of parliament for the area.

“This time we are ready for anything. Come thunder ofr rain- we will make sure that victory for Zanu (PF) is certain,” Mukurunge told villagers.

Robert Mugabe is considering treason charges against Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and others over confidential talks with US diplomats revealed by WikiLeaks.

Attorney-General Johannes Tomana said he would appoint a commission to examine whether recent disclosures in leaked American embassy cables amount to a breach of the constitution. High treason in Zimbabwe can result in the death penalty.

Mr Tomana told the state-owned Herald: ”With immediate effect, I am going to instruct a team of practising lawyers to look into the issues that arise from the WikiLeaks.

”The WikiLeaks appear to show a treasonous collusion between local Zimbabweans and the aggressive international world, particularly the United States,” he said.

State media reports have said supporters of President Robert Mugabe want an official inquiry into Mr Tsvangirai’s discussion of international sanctions with the US ambassador in Harare.

Mr Mugabe’s Zanu-PF party said last week that the government should draft a law that makes it a treasonable offence to call for sanctions. A US embassy cable dated December 24, 2009, suggests Mr Tsvangirai privately insisted sanctions ”must be kept in place”.

The Movement for Democratic Change leader ”acknowledged that his public statements calling for easing of sanctions versus his private conversations saying they must be kept in place have caused problems,” the memo states.

Mr Tsvangirai’s defenders might note that, in the same cable, he asked for some ”flexibility” in sanctions. It says: ”Zanu-PF has implemented a strategy of reciprocity in the negotiations, using Western sanctions as a cudgel against MDC. He [Tsvangirai] would like to see some quiet moves, provided there are acceptable benchmarks, to ‘give’ some modest reward for modest progress.”

Mr Tsvangirai’s aides say he is not guilty and describe the controversy as personal attacks on the Prime Minister. Beatrice Mtetwa, a leading human rights lawyer, said it would be very difficult to mount a legal case on the basis of WikiLeaks.

Mr Mugabe’s wife, Grace, has filed a $US15 million lawsuit against a newspaper that reproduced a WikiLeaks report saying she had been involved in underhand sales of diamonds from the controversial Marange mines.

The MDC has called for the government to investigate the charges.