BBC NEWS | Africa | Blow for defiant Zimbabwe farmers
Eleven of Zimbabwe's remaining white farmers are to go on trial for defying a state eviction order after losing a bid to have the charges thrown out.
The magistrate in Chegatu, north-west of Harare, reportedly accused the farmers of delaying tactics and ordered them to leave their land immediately.
A white farmers' group said the ruling was a "farce" and accused authorities of failing to follow due process.
Fewer than 400 white farmers are thought to remain in Zimbabwe.
The seizure of some 4,000 white-owned farms has seen a collapse in Zimbabwe's agricultural production.
The farmers appeared in court on Thursday, having failed to respect a 30 September deadline to leave their properties, reported the news agency AFP.
Their lawyer, David Drury, put forward two arguments: first, that the charges of defying the government eviction order should be thrown out; second, that if not, the case should be referred to the Supreme Court because it touched on constitutional issues.
But the magistrate rejected both arguments.
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