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Embattled President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe makes first public appearance since his house arrest (Photo:Al Jazeera)
 
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has appeared in public for the first time since the army’s takeover earlier this week.
 
Mugabe, who was believed to be under house arrest, attended a university graduation ceremony in Harare on Friday, where he was welcomed by a cheering crowd of supporters.
 
Dressed in a blue academic gown and hat, he entered the ceremony venue surrounded by security personnel, and held a speech. 
 
This came after soldiers took control of the headquarters of the state broadcaster ZBC and blocked access to government offices on Wednesday, while denying it was part of a coup against Mugabe’s government.
 
 
The president has refused to step down, amid mounting pressure from the army to allow a smooth and bloodless transition.
 
The military seeks to reinstate former Vice President Emerson Mnangagwa as first vice president and then as leader of a transitional administration.
 
According to an army statement broadcast on Zimbabwe state television on Friday, "significant progress" was made in mediation talks aimed at ending Mugabe’s military house arrest.
 

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Embattled President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe makes first public appearance since his house arrest (Photo:Al Jazeera)   Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has appeared in public for the first time since the army's takeover earlier this week.   Mugabe, who was believed to be under house arrest, attended a university graduation ceremony in Harare...