Police in Mozambique debunks social media reports of 'terrorist' attack

Panic spread through the northern Mozambique city of Pemba on Wednesday as reports of terrorists storming a supermarket emerged on social media.

According to the posts, the group of armed men - possibly related to the armed Islamist militant group which has been on a murderous rampage through the province of Cabo Delgado - had taken hostages.

Schools and businesses quickly shut their doors, terrified they might be next.

Only, it never happened. Or at least, that is what local police believe.

Cabo Delgado's police commander Joaquim Sive explained: "We were informed that a supermarket was being robbed with the use of a firearm. We sent police contingents to investigate.

"However, after entering the building cautiously, and going through it, room by room, we found nothing that would suggest there were criminals in the premises.

"This conclusion is still preliminary. With the management of the mall, we are going to determine what actually happened."

The only person shot, he added, was a private security guard, reportedly by one of his colleagues.

"We regret all this, which left the entire city startled," he added. "The feeling of insecurity in Pemba was generalised. But, indeed there no episodes that can justify such concern."


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