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November 18, 2017

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The Latest: Zimbabwe party accuses army leader of treason

Updated Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017 | 10:36 a.m.

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — The Latest on Zimbabwe's political turmoil (all times local):

8:35 p.m.

Zimbabwe's ruling party is accusing the country's army commander of "treasonable conduct" for his threat to have the military step in and calm political turmoil.

The statement issued Tuesday night says the unprecedented comments made a day earlier by army commander Constantino Chiwenga were "clearly calculated to disturb national peace and stability" and were "meant to incite insurrection."

The statement comes hours after The Associated Press saw three tanks with several soldiers in a convoy on a road heading toward an army barracks just outside the capital, Harare.

While it is routine for tanks to move along that route, the timing heightens unease in a country that for the first time is seeing an open rift between the military and 93-year-old President Robert Mugabe.

Tensions rose last week after Mugabe fired his deputy Emmerson Mnangagwa, who had the military's support.

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5:30 p.m.

Zimbabwe is on edge as army tanks are seen outside the capital a day after the army commander threatened to "step in" to calm political tensions over the president's firing of his deputy.

The Associated Press saw three tanks with several soldiers in a convoy on a road heading toward an army barracks just outside the capital, Harare.

While it is routine for tanks to move along that route, Tuesday's timing heightens unease in this country that for the first time is seeing an open rift between the military and 93-year-old President Robert Mugabe.

Mugabe last week fired Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa and accused him of plotting to take power. Over 100 senior officials allegedly backing Mnangagwa have been listed for disciplinary measures by a faction associated with Mugabe's wife.