Hours after witnesses first described hearing explosions and gunfire in the capital of Harare, Zimbabwe's army said in a statement what is taking place is not "a military takeover of government" and President Robert Mugabe is safe and under protection. The army is targeting people who "were committing crimes that are causing social and economic suffering in the country," the statement said. "As soon as we have accomplished our mission, we expect that the situation will return to normalcy." Earlier this month, Mugabe ousted vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, who had been viewed as Mugabe's likely successor; the new frontrunner is Mugabe's wife, Grace. On Monday, Gen. Constantine Chiwenga said if there are any more purges in the ruling Zanu-PF party, the army "will not hesitate to step in."
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