Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe resigns following coup

Nearly a week after the African nation’s military took control of the government he has led for decades, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe resigned Tuesday, effective immediately.

According to NBC News, former Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa will take the helm of the political party Mugabe helped found and is expected to replace the ousted president within a couple of days.

Last week’s military coup resulted amid rising tensions that came to a head when Mugabe fired Mnangagwa in an apparent attempt to replace the deputy with his wife, Grace.

In an often rambling public statement shortly after the takeover, Mugabe rejected increasing calls to step down.

A statement from the U.S. Embassy in Zimbabwe reacted to the development by insisting that “the path forward must lead to free, fair and inclusive elections.”