News / Africa

EU Renews Sanctions Against Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe's ruling party ZANU-PF war veterans march past the US Embassy holding placards condemning sanctions against their government in Harare, Zimbabwe, Apr 23, 2010 (file photo)
Zimbabwe's ruling party ZANU-PF war veterans march past the US Embassy holding placards condemning sanctions against their government in Harare, Zimbabwe, Apr 23, 2010 (file photo)

Multimedia

Audio
Peta Thornycroft

European Union sanctions against President Robert Mugabe and most of his colleagues in the ZANU-PF party have been renewed despite requests from the Southern African Development Community (SADC) that they be abandoned.  The EU has lifted restrictions against 31 people, mostly wives of those on the sanctions list and a few minor political personalities.

Restrictions including visa bans and asset freezes remain on most ZANU-PF leaders and a number of state companies for another year.  The restrictions were first imposed in 2002 after violence accompanying presidential elections.

Three years ago, the EU and United States added state companies and a few private businesses and some business leaders who were not members of ZANU-PF to the list.

South African President Jacob Zuma and other leaders within SADC have asked the EU to lift the restrictions, saying they harm the regional group's ability to resolve the political and economic crisis in Zimbabwe.

SADC is the guarantor of the political agreement which brought the two-year-old Zimbabwe unity government to power.

Zimbabwe political analyst Brian Raftopoulos said it was clear after recent violence, mostly against supporters of MDC and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai in Harare, that the EU would not lift sanctions.

"Clearly they are moving towards rethinking what the meaning of these sanctions are, and it was always predictable they would not remove them this time around specially because of the recent violence," said Raftopoulos.

He said the EU had engaged in deep debate about the usefulness of the sanctions and the effect they had on efforts to mediate the issues afflicting Zimbabwe's power-sharing government.

He said the EU had chosen a holding position.  Raftopoulos and other analysts are concerned about lack of progress of the SADC medaition.

"The problem of course, is that for the moment the SADC mediation doesn't seem to be moving very effectively," added Raftopoulos.

MDC finance minister Tendai Biti has said repeatedly that the restrictions against some of Zimabwbe's state companies should be lifted.  He said restrictions on some of these companies hurt the economy.

Mr. Mugabe says sanctions have caused misery to millions of Zimbabweans.

Zimbabwe trades normally with the EU and the United States.  Most businessmen in Zimbabwe say they want all the restrictions lifted.

Among those whose names have been removed from the EU list is Peter Chingoka, the long- standing boss of Zimbabwe cricket.

When the inclusive govenrment came to power, MDC education minister David Coltart, also responsible for sport, moved quickly to persuade most of the cricketing world to re-engage with Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe cricketers are now playing internationally.

So far neither the EU nor U.S. have disclosed what assets belonging to those on the list have been frozen by the sanctions.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs