Zimbabwe Increases Security at Diamond Fields After Miners Leave

Zimbabwe increased security at diamond mines in the Marange District after ordering mining companies with expired licenses to leave the fields, Mines Minister Walter Chidakwa said.

Security officials at the area requested extra support, Chidakwa told reporters in Harare, the capital, on Wednesday. Looters invaded diamond fields late on Monday after operations ceased, the state-controlled Herald newspaper reported, citing Ramsy Malik, general manager of Diamond Mining Corp.

“They’ve assured that their assessment of the situation on the ground requires a bit more deployment and that if they are given a bit that they will be able to stabilize the situation,” Chidakwa said.

Zimbabwe ordered all diamond-mining companies to end operations, leave behind equipment and vacate their premises after the government didn’t renew their licenses, the minister said on Monday. The ruling came after miners including Anjin Investments Ltd. didn’t agree to the nationalization of their assets, he said.