The UN says it’s “deeply concerned” by the deadly violence that followed pro-democracy protests in Eswatini.
The UN human rights agency in a statement said security forces deployed unnecessary use of force and live rounds in suppressing last weeks protests.
“We have received allegations of disproportionate and unnecessary use of force, harassment and intimidation by security forces in suppressing last week’s protests, including the use of live ammunition by police,” said a statement by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.
It noted that even as the situation had become calm now, “we remain concerned at the potential for further unrest”.
It urged the authorities to adhere to the rule of law and human rights principles in managing the protests.
It also called for prompt and transparent investigations into human rights violations as well as the opening up of a forum for a long-term dialogue to address the concerns of the public.
The remarks came as a delegation from the southern Africa regional bloc, Sadc, met Eswatini government officials and other stakeholders for consultations to address the ongoing crisis.
Demonstrators have been calling for King Mswati III to step down and allow for a transition to democracy.
Eswatini – formerly called Swaziland – is Africa’s last absolute monarchy.