Zim minister protests at arrest of journalist

HARARE - Zimbabwe's security agencies are thwarting attempts to boost tourism to the cash-strapped country during the World Cup in neighbouring South Africa, a government minister has complained.

HARARE - Zimbabwe's security agencies are thwarting attempts to boost tourism to the cash-strapped country during the World Cup in neighbouring South Africa, a government minister has complained.

Zimbabwe Tourism Minister Walter Mzembi told journalists he was "extremely concerned" after a Mexican journalist, who had been accredited by authorities to make a documentary on tourist sites in southern Zimbabwe, was arrested for no reason.

Mexico is one of the 32 teams participating in the tournament.

The documentary aims to show Mexicans how and where to travel in Zimbabwe between their side's matches.

"We approved a journalist from Mexico to go and film in (the town of) Masvingo and he was arrested," Mzembi said.

"The same journalist,with my driver, my car and a government letter, was arrested."

Masvingo is famous for a society that flourished there about 800 years ago, known as Great Zimbabwe.

"We cannot attract tourists if we do not look at our law and order," Mzembi said. The journalist was released after the minister's intervention. - Sapa-DPA

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