Zimbabwe: President Robert Mugabe resigns

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Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe has resigned, speaker of parliament Jacob Mudenda has confirmed.

In a letter seen by Mudenda, Mugabe said that he had come to the decision to resign voluntarily in order to aid a smooth transfer of power.

The announcement has halted the impeachment hearings, which lawmakers had started against the president after he refused to resign last week in the wake of the peaceful military intervention.

Lawmakers cheered with joy upon hearing the news and people have begun celebrating in the streets in Zimbabwe’s capital Harare and elsewhere in the country.

Mugabe has been president of Zimbabwe since the country obtained independence from the United Kingdom in 1980. He was a popular leader with large parts of the population throughout the 1980s and 1990s, but the the last 15 years have seen Zimbabwe’s economy in crisis and democratic elections had become marred in violence and corruption.

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