News / Africa

Zimbabwe's Mugabe Threatens British, US Firms Over Sanctions

Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe is seen addressing a crowd in Harare in this August 12, 2013, file photo.Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe is seen addressing a crowd in Harare in this August 12, 2013, file photo.
x
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe is seen addressing a crowd in Harare in this August 12, 2013, file photo.
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe is seen addressing a crowd in Harare in this August 12, 2013, file photo.
TEXT SIZE - +
Reuters
— Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe threatened “tit-for-tat” retaliation against companies from Britain and the United States on Sunday if the Western nations persisted in pressuring his government with sanctions and what he called “harassment.”
 
Mugabe's latest verbal broadside against his main Western critics followed their questioning of his re-election in a July 31 vote that his rival Morgan Tsvangirai denounced as a “coup by ballot” which he said involved widespread vote-rigging.
 
Mugabe, who at 89 is Africa's oldest leader, has rejected the fraud allegations and was sworn in on Thursday for a new five-year term in the southern African nation that he has ruled since its independence from Britain in 1980.
 
“They should not continue to harass us, the British and Americans,” Mugabe told supporters at the funeral of an air force officer.
 
“We have not done anything to their companies here - the British have several companies in this country - and we have not imposed any controls, any sanctions against them, but time will come when we will say well, tit-for-tat, you hit me I hit you.”
 
British companies in Zimbabwe include banking groups Standard Chartered Plc and Barclays Plc. These are already the target of a so-called “indigenization” policy that requires they cede a majority stake to black Zimbabweans.
 
The policy has also been applied to foreign mining houses in the mineral-rich country including those owned by South African companies such as Impala Platinum.
 
The United States has a far more limited corporate presence in Zimbabwe than Britain.
 
Targeted sanctions
 
Mugabe and prominent members of his ZANU-PF party, which won a two-thirds majority in the July 31 election, are the targets of financial and travel sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union. These were applied by Washington and Brussels to punish alleged election-rigging and abuses of power.
 
The European Union in March eased most sanctions against Zimbabwe after the country's voters approved a new constitution which paved the way for July's poll, but kept Mugabe and nine of his closest associates on the list.
 
It will review relations with Zimbabwe because of its “serious concerns” about the election, E.U. foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said on Thursday. Its verdict on the vote will be crucial to a decision on whether it continues to ease sanctions.
 
Britain said last week Mugabe's re-election could not be deemed credible without an independent investigation into allegations of voting irregularities.
 
U.S. officials also said the July 31 election was flawed and Washington had no plans to loosen sanctions until there were signs of change in the country.
 
In contrast, observers from the regional 15-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the African Union broadly endorsed the vote as free and peaceful, and called on all parties to accept its results.
 
Mugabe still enjoys support in Africa for his role in the liberation guerrilla war that helped end white-minority rule in what was formerly Rhodesia, and led to its independence.
 
He frequently accuses his critics of racism and of wanting to recolonize Zimbabwe.

“They think, we the blacks are inferior, they are superior. But in Zimbabwe we will never accept that a white man, merely because he is white is superior, no. We will chase them away,” Mugabe said about Western powers on Sunday.

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid