Mozambique’s army has condemned the apparent execution of a naked woman by men wearing military uniforms, shown in video footage, where she is beaten with a stick before being shot in the back as she tries to flee.
In the unverified footage, which circulated on Monday, the group taunt the woman, referring to her as ‘al-Shabaab’ – a local term for an Islamist insurgent group that has been operating in the northern-most province of Cabo Delgado since 2017, with no known link to the Somali group of the same name.
One hits her in the head and body with a stick before others shoot and, they say in the video, kill her on the side of the road.
In a statement released late on Monday, the army, engaged in a battle with insurgents in the province, also home to blockbuster gas projects being developed by oil majors like Total, said it considered the images shocking and horrifying, and “above all condemnable”.
“The FDS (Defence and Security Forces) reiterate that they do not agree with any barbaric act that substantiates the violation of human rights,” it said, calling for an investigation into the video’s authenticity.
The footage comes amid allegations of abuses by government soldiers in Cabo Delgado. After an escalation in the insurgency, which saw the capture of a key port town in August, and the security forces’ response, reports and videos of beatings or other abuses have…