eSwatini police arrests several pro-democracy activists

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Several pro-democracy activists have been arrested and questioned by police in eSwatini – the Southern African country formerly known as Swaziland which is one of the world’s last remaining absolute monarchies.

Mario Masuku of the People’s United Democratic Movement said the police raids began before dawn and, after their homes had been searched for political material, the activists were questioned for several hours before being released.

A police spokesman said they had been questioned in relation to state security.

Correspondents say there are growing calls for wider democracy in eSwatini and several anti-monarchy demonstrations have taken place in recent months.

Critics of King Mswati III point to his lavish lifestyle while most of his 1.2 million subjects live in poverty.

Titi