August 1 Kneeling Soldier Only Shot In The Air, Army Brigadier Tells Commission

A soldier fires shots towards demonstrators, on August 1 2018, in Harare, as protests erupted over alleged fraud in the country's election. Protests in Zimbabwe's historic elections turned bloody on August 1 as a man was shot dead during demonstrations over alleged vote fraud and the president appealed for calm. The man died after soldiers fired live ammunition during opposition protests in downtown Harare, AFP reporters saw. / AFP PHOTO / Zinyange AUNTONY

Zimbabwe National Army Brigadier General Sanyatwa told the commission today that the infamous soldier captured on video shooting during the 01 August violence, was actually firing in the air.

The brigadier was responding to a commissioner who had asked if any dead bodies were recovered from the area where the kneeling soldier was firing. He responded:

No, sir. if you watch that video closely, that soldier who took a kneeling position whilst firing; if you check properly, military experts, that rifle was being fired at an angle of 45 degrees in the air, and not direct to the [people].

He was asked if he examined the video and he confirmed he did. He was then asked if that was indeed his assessment. Sanyatwa responded:

Not my assessment but it’s exactly what happened.

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