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A vendor moves for cover as a Zimbabwean soldier opens fire to disperse a crowd of demonstrators in Harare. Photo: Zinyange Auntony/AFP/Getty Images

Incumbent Emmerson Mnangagwa has won Zimbabwe's presidential election, according to results read out moments ago by the country's electoral commission.

The backstory: The election, the first since the end of Robert Mugabe's 38-year reign, had seemed to represent a historic opportunity for the southern African country. It has thus far yielded only anger, fear and violence. The opposition, led by 40-year-old Nelson Chamisa, has already rejected the results, which showed him securing 44% to Mnangagwa's 51%.

Monday's vote proceeded relatively smoothly. Then, order broke down. Al Jazeera's Hamza Mohamed reports from Harare:

  • "On Wednesday, after electoral officials announced that Mnangagwa's ruling ZANU-PF party won most of the parliamentary vote, opposition supporters who claim Monday's poll was rigged took to the streets, burning tires and throwing stones before riot police and the army intervened. Witnesses say soldiers fired live bullets."
  • "Chamisa claimed victory before the release of official results. Meanwhile, Mnangagwa said he was in talks with the opposition to find ways to defuse the situation."

The FT's David Pilling describes the stakes for a country in the grips of a currency crisis, and with not nearly enough jobs to support its well-educated population:

  • "Down one fork, if a clear winner emerges in a poll deemed to pass muster, Zimbabwe could shed its pariah status and be reinstated into the global community. That could mean a restructuring of debt arrears and a potential flood of investment into one of Africa’s most promising economies."
  • Down the other, "lies a progressive falling out with western capitals — although not necessarily with China. Zimbabwe would then hunker back down into an isolationist sulk."

History has loomed over this election — decades of one-party rule, Mnangagwa's role in enforcing Mugabe's repression, ZANU-PF's history of rigging elections. After the most open election Zimbabwe has seen in decades, it remains unclear how much has changed.

Go deeper

Texas House probes school library books dealing with race and sexuality

Photo: Brittany Murray/MediaNews Group/Long Beach Press-Telegram via Getty Images

Texas state Rep. Matt Krause (R), chair of the Texas House Committee on General Investigating, announced Wednesday that he's initiating a probe into schools' library books, according to a letter sent to the state's education agency and other superintendents.

Why it matters: The probe focuses on books that discuss race, sexuality, or "make students feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress because of their race or sex," Krause wrote in the letter.

5 hours ago - World

Iran agrees to resume Vienna nuclear talks in November

Ali Bagheri (R) with Enrique Mora in Tehran on Oct. 14. Photo: Iranian Foreign Ministry handout via Getty

Iran's new chief nuclear negotiator said following a meeting in Brussels on Wednesday that Iran would resume negotiations in Vienna before the end of November, with the exact date to be set next week.

Why it matters: The Vienna talks have been frozen since Iran's new hardline president, Ebrahim Raisi, was elected in June. This is the most direct commitment from Raisi's government to return to the negotiating table.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Democrats' billionaires tax explained

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

There is now legislative language behind the push to tax American billionaires on unrealized capital gains, as Sen. Ron Wyden last night released his 107-page plan.

Why it matters: This would be a sea change in U.S. tax policy, which has only applied to realized gains (otherwise known as income).