Sunday, December 7, 2008

Calls mount for Mugabe to resign

From Al Jazeera, 12/7/08:

Calls mount for Mugabe to resign
Cholera is thought to have claimed nearly 600 lives in Zimbabwe in the past few months [AFP]

Calls for Zimbabwe's President to resign are mounting, with Botswana's foreign minister saying southern African countries have not done enough to make Robert Mugabe to step down.

Speaking to Al Jazeera on Sunday, Phandu Skelemani said the international community could easily force Mugabe out.

"Sadc [The Southern African Development Community] should never have recognised Mugabe as legitimate.

"[They] should treat Mugabe and the MDC [the opposition Movement for Democratic Change] as equals because none of them have won elections."

He said that if Sadc did not bring pressure on Mugabe, then the grouping should be held responsible for any deaths in Zimbabawe.

"The best solution would be to pressurise Mugabe as an international community to go for a [presidential] run off.

International condemnation
The call followed Gordon Brown, the British prime minister, condemning Mugabe's "blood stained regime" and Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state, saying that it is well past the time for Mugabe to quit.

EU foreign ministers are expected to adopt a draft text tightening sanctions against Zimbabwe on Monday, due to fears over the worsening humanitarian situation and political deadlock in the country.

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