News / Africa

    Zimbabwe Activists Urge UN to Set Up Human Rights Office

    The Director of Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum Abel Chikomo, June 12, 2009. The Director of Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum Abel Chikomo, June 12, 2009.
    x
    The Director of Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum Abel Chikomo, June 12, 2009.
    The Director of Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum Abel Chikomo, June 12, 2009.
    HARARE - Civic activists in Zimbabwe have called on the United Nations to set up an office in the country to monitor what they say is the deteriorating human rights situation.  The call comes after renewed political violence resulted in a senior member of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s party being killed - allegedly by supporters of President Robert Mugabe’s ZANU-PF party.  

    Zimbabwean civil society groups want the United Nations to establish an office in the country to monitor growing human rights violations.

    Abel Chikomo - a representative of non-governmental organizations - spoke to reporters in Harare Wednesday. He said, “We urge the U.N. to maintain a permanent presence in and focus on Zimbabwe, watching over the protection of human rights of all Zimbabweans through setting up a U.N. Human Rights Monitoring Office.”

    Last week, Cephas Magura, a senior member of Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s MDC party, was killed in Mudzi district, about 300 kilometers east of Harare. A local media report said he was stoned to death.  Among the suspects arrested was David Chimukoko, a local official with President Mugabe’s ZANU-PF party.

    MDC leaders called the killing an example of renewed politically-motivated violence and intimidation.  

    For years, the party and human rights groups have accused ZANU-PF of arresting, beating, and killing MDC supporters.  

    United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay speaks to journalists after meeting Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe in Harare, May 23, 2012.United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay speaks to journalists after meeting Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe in Harare, May 23, 2012.
    x
    United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay speaks to journalists after meeting Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe in Harare, May 23, 2012.
    United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay speaks to journalists after meeting Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe in Harare, May 23, 2012.
    The latest incident follows a ground-breaking five-day visit last month by the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay. She vowed to keep Zimbabwe under the spotlight.

    "I will continue to watch the country and watch the protection of human rights of all Zimbabweans," said Pillay. "I will ask for a further visit and I am going to consider asking the government whether we can have a presence in the country [in the form of] a human rights advisor. That’s our mandate, which is to cover human rights.”

    Zimbabwe’s human rights record has remained on the international radar for more than a decade. It started when President Mugabe and his supporters began forcing white farm owners off their land in 2000.  

    Elections in 2008 were so violent that regional leaders rejected the victory Mr. Mugabe had claimed over Mr. Tsvangirai. That led to the current and troubled power-sharing government between ZANU-PF and the MDC.  The parties are in a deadlock over a new constitution and timing of elections, which must be held sometime in the next year.

    You May Like

    Candidates' Comments Fly Like New Hampshire Snowflakes

    Four days ahead of the country's first-in-the-nation Republican and Democratic party primary elections, surveys show the parties' contests tightening

    South Korea Says North Korea Moving Closer to Rocket Launch

    In phone call, US President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping agree that Pyongyang's move would be 'provocative'

    Australian Commander: IS Changing Tactics

    Head of Australian forces in Middle East talks with VOA about training Iraqi troops, countering evolving Islamic State efforts and defeating extremism

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: mutetwa from: Scotland
    June 07, 2012 5:36 AM
    Mdc does not seem to have a clear cut agenda, they seem to continue to harp on the rhetoric statement that human rights violations started with ceasing white farms, is this true considering that the majority of their members now own some of this dispossessed land, this party is just as fake as Zanu PF. Zimbabwe needs a new breed of politicians who are more focused and disciplined

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibiti
    X
    Hamada Elsaram
    February 05, 2016 4:30 PM
    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video Former Drug CEO Martin Shkreli Angers US Lawmakers

    A former U.S. pharmaceutical business executive has angered lawmakers by refusing to explain why he raised the price of a life-saving pill by 5,000 percent. Martin Shkreli was removed from a congressional hearing on Thursday after citing his Fifth Amendment right to stay silent. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Super Bowl TV Commercials are Super Business for Advertisers

    The Super Bowl, the championship clash between the two top teams in American Football, is the most-watched sporting event of the year, and advertisers are lining up and paying big bucks to get their commercials on the air. In fact, the TV commercials during the Super Bowl have become one of the most anticipated and popular features of the event. VOA's Brian Allen has a sneak peek of what you can expect to see when the big game goes to commercial break, and the real entertainment begins.
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Solar Innovation Provides Cheap, Clean Energy to Kenya Residents

    In Kenya, a company called M-Kopa Solar is providing clean energy to more than 300,000 homes across East Africa by allowing customers to "pay-as-you-go" via their cell phones. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Kangemi, customers pay a small deposit for a solar unit and then pay less than a dollar a day to get clean energy to light up their homes or businesses.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Apprenticeships Put Americans on Path Back to Work

    Trying to get more people into the U.S. workforce, the Obama administration last year announced $175 million in grants towards apprenticeship programs. VOA White House correspondent Aru Pande went inside one training center outside of Washington that has gained national recognition for helping put people on the path to employment.
    Video

    Video New Material May Reduce Concussion Effects

    As the 2016 National Football League season reaches its summit at the Super Bowl this coming Sunday (2/7), scientists are trying to learn how to more effectively protect football players from dangerous and damaging concussions. Researchers at Cardiff and Cambridge Universities say their origami-based material may solve the problem. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Saudi Arabian Women's Sports Chip Away at Stereotypes

    Saudi Arabian female athletes say that sports are on the front line of busting traditions that quash women’s voices, both locally and internationally. In their hometown of Jeddah, a group of basketball players say that by connecting sports to health issues, they are encouraging women and girls to get out of their homes and participate in public life. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
    Video

    Video A Year Later, Fortunes Mixed for Syrians Forging New Lives in Berlin

    In April of last year, VOA followed the progress of six young Syrian refugees -- four brothers and their two friends -- as they made their way from Libya to Italy by boat, and eventually to Germany. Reporter Henry Ridgwell caught up with the refugees again in Berlin, as they struggle to forge new lives amid the turmoil of Europe's refugee crisis.
    Video

    Video Zika Virus May be Hard to Stop

    With the Zika virus spreading rapidly, the World Health Organization Monday declared Zika a global health emergency. As Alberto Pimienta reports, for many governments and experts, the worst is yet to come.