INTRODUCTION: An explosion destroyed part of Zimbabwe's Independence Arch on the main highway from Salisbury Airport to the capital on Friday (24 July).
GV Independence Arch in Salisbury.
SV Damaged girders and concrete reinforcements lying on ground.
SV View of damaged girders on ground.
SV Police directing crane PAN UP TO crane fixing boom to Arch. (2 SHOTS)
SV Men standing in Arch directing crane. (2 SHOTS)
SV White shildren looking on.
SV Crane removing damaged flagpole.
SV Police and crane.
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Background: INTRODUCTION: An explosion destroyed part of Zimbabwe's Independence Arch on the main highway from Salisbury Airport to the capital on Friday (24 July). The blast is thought to have been caused by about 12 kilograms (25 lbs) of plastic explosive planted against one of the Arch's supporting legs.
SYNOPSIS: Nearby residents said they heard a loud thump just after dawn and windows rattled over a wide area. Police and engineering workers quickly moved in to investigate the damage and prop up the Arch.
The structure was built across the busy road three months ago on the first anniversary of independence, and symbolises the end of 90 years of white rule in the former British colony of Rhodesia, and the birth of the new Zimbabwe. Former guerrilla leader Robert Mugabe's rise to power after a seven-year bush was against minority rule angered many of the country's white residents, and some still harbour resentment two years after the ceasefire. But many followers of rival black nationalist leaders also bear grudges after losing the 1980 Independence elections. Police say they have no idea who might have been responsible for the attack.