Zimbabwean President, Emmerson Mnangagwa, who succeeded ousted Robert Mugabe in November, has pardoned at least 3,000 prisoners to clear out overpopulated jails, officials said Thursday.

The pardon will see the release of all female prisoners except those serving life terms, as well as all disabled and juvenile prisoners.

Terminally-ill prisoners and those above the age of 60 who have served a third of their time will also be freed.

“The president in terms of the constitution of Zimbabwe has granted amnesty to prisoners,” the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service (ZPCS) said in a statement.

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“The exercise has… gone a long way in decongesting our prisons.”

About 3,000 prisoners will be released, the ZPCS said, bringing the prison population down to 17,000.

The statement also announced that prisoners on death row for more than 10 years will not face the death penalty, but will spend life in jail.

The country last executed a prisoner in 2005, and Mnangagwa is a strong opponent of the death penalty.

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