The agreement reached on Saturday (7 September) between Portuguese authorities and the Mozambique Liberation Front, Frelimo, over independence for the Portuguese territory of Mozambique has sparked off a series of rioting and demonstrations.
GV ZOOM IN Demonstrators in main square
SV Portuguese flag TILT DOWN TO Crowd below
GV PAN Crowd in main square
SV ZOOM IN Soldiers check cars on road outside Beira
SV ZOOM IN Car being checked
GV PAN Truck leaving check-point passing soldiers on road.
Initials ET/227 ET/250
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Background: The agreement reached on Saturday (7 September) between Portuguese authorities and the Mozambique Liberation Front, Frelimo, over independence for the Portuguese territory of Mozambique has sparked off a series of rioting and demonstrations.
Disturbances in the capital, Lourenco Marques, were the worst reported in the territory where at least 100 people were said on Wednesday (11 September) to have been killed.
But in Beira, the major port and second largest city in the country, the situation has been reported as much calmer.
On Monday (9 September) dissidents, calling themselves the Movement for a Free Mozambique (MFM), continued to demonstrate in Beira's main square in a show of white defiance against moves towards independence. Waving Portuguese flags and banners, the MFM supporters - who draw much of their numbers from ex-servicemen - demonstrated their opposition for a complete handover of power to Frelimo.
But, on the outskirts of Beira, the Portuguese army seemed well in control and had established roadblocks where all traffic was stopped and searched for arms.
By Wednesday, Beira was reported "all quiet". The demonstrators had dispersed, people were going about their business normally and the army was in complete control over the city centre. The only building under guard was the radio station.
SYNOPSIS: Demonstrators in the main square of Beira, Mozambique's major port and second largest city. On Wednesday they were showing their defiance at Saturday's agreement between the Portuguese authorities and the Mozambique Liberation Front Frelime over independence for the Portuguese territory.
The Portuguese flag was much in evidence as the white dissents, calling themselves the Movement for a Free Mozambique, showed their opposition for a complete handover of power to Frelimo. But Beira's reaction was quiet compared with the bloody riots in the capital, Lourence Marques, where at least a hundred people have been killed.
Outside Beira the Portuguese army was in full control, ensuring the situation was not inflamed by checking all traffic for arms. And - by Wednesday - Beira had returned almost to normal. The crowds had dispersed and the only sign of military activity was an armed guard over the radio station in the city centre. However, the capital was still reported under a state of full military alert with heavily-armed patrols moving about the city.