Officials of the main opposition party in Mozambique, Renamo, were heard on Wednesday by a prosecutor in connection with an investigation into recent deadly attacks in the center of the country, stronghold of the former rebellion.
The head of the Renamo parliamentary group, Ivone Soares, party spokesperson José Manteigas, and members of parliament Antonio Muchanga and Manuel Bissopo are suspected of having participated in the recruitment of young ambushers.
The government accuses the party of being behind the attacks, which left a dozen dead.
« I came to the prosecution out of respect for Mozambicans, out of respect for the law and I am not afraid to clarify what I know, » Muchanga told reporters after his hearing. « The matter is in the hands of justice, I cannot say anything. »
Renamo chief Ossufo Momade recently denied any involvement by his party in the violence.
Born of the rebellion of the civil war (1976-1992), Renamo signed last August a peace agreement with the government which provides for the disarmament and the reintegration of its military wing, which had taken up arms again in 2013.
A faction of the party has however rejected this text and claimed in recent months several armed raids in the center of the country. Its leader, Mariano Nhongo, has warned that he will not allow President Filipe Nyusi to be sworn in for a new term on January 15, 2020.
In power since 2014, Nyusi was widely re-elected in October after elections deemed fraudulent by the opposition and many foreign observers.