Italian man, son shot dead in Zimbabwe wildlife park

Rome, March 14 (IANS/AKI) The Italian foreign ministry on Monday confirmed reports that two Italians from Padua — Claudio Chiarelli and his son Massimiliano — were killed in a Zimbabwe nature reserve.

The ministry said “the circumstances are yet to be clarified”.

Claudio Chiarelli, and his son, 20, were shot dead by guards in Mana Pools nature reserve after being mistaken for elephant poachers, the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority said on Monday.

Details of the tragic incident, said to have happened on Sunday evening, were still unclear.

Claudio Chiarelli was originally from the Italian city of Padua but had reportedly been in Africa for decades. He was a professional hunter. His son, who was born in Zimbabwe, was described in media reports as a safari guide.

Zimbabwe police are investigating the incident.

Authorities in Mana Pools have for years been battling poachers, most of whom come from neighbouring Zambia and who have recently been using cyanide to kill elephants for their tusks.

–IANS/AKI

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