Two men shot, not beheaded near Pemba high security prison

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Two men were shot dead near the Mieze high security prison 15km from Pemba, the capital of Cabo Delgado, nine days ago by unknown attackers.

The case has attracted attention because the Mieze prison is home to significant numbers of suspected members of the insurgency that has terrorised coastal regions of Cabo Delgado since late 2017 — and in particular because of the appearance last month of a letter supposedly written by the group, which has so far not perpetrated any attacks as far south as Pemba, promising to attack the Mieze prison.

However, reports claiming that the two victims were beheaded are not true, according to Cabo Delgado police spokesperson Augusto Guta. The insurgency has become notorious for beheading its victims.

The two victims in the Mieze attack were shot dead  by assassins who arrived and left the area by car, local sources in Mieze told Zitamar shortly after the killing on 22 February. The attack took place under cover of darkness, and the assassins drove away in the direction of Pemba, initially keeping the car lights turned off to avoid attention. The witnesses said they were unable to identify the car in the dark.

The victims were found blindfolded and with their hands tied — and were well dressed, according to one witness who spoke with Zitamar News.

Police spokesman Guta confirmed that the police are investigating the case, having removed the bodies to the mortuary in Pemba.

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