King Mswati Calls for Dialogue as Violent Protests Escalate

The King of Eswatini King Mswati III has called for dialogue as violent protests escalate in the Kingdom.


Mswati called for dialogue a day after the President of South Africa His Excellency Cyril Ramaphosa deployed an envoy to meet the king.


Ramaphosa deployed the envoy on behalf of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).


However, the opposition and civil society have already rejected the call for talks.


Formerly known as Swaziland, Eswatini, a small landlocked state of 1.3 million people where protests are rare, has been the scene of pro-democracy demonstrations by students, civil servants, transport workers and health care workers since June, leading the authorities to deploy the army.



At least two people were killed and 80 injured Wednesday in clashes with security forces who fired tear gas and rubber bullets but also opened live fire.


Police say 37 people have been killed since the protests began in June, but a citizens’ group, the Leftu Sonkhe Institute of Strategic Thinking and Development, puts the death toll at around 80.