Officials in Zimbabwe report the nation's annual inflation rate rose to
a record 231 million percent in July as efforts to create a unity
government remain deadlocked.
The state-run Herald newspaper
Thursday reports Zimbabwe's Central Statistical Office as saying higher
food prices are the primary cause of the growth in inflation.
news comes as Zimbabwe's main political parties failed again Wednesday
to break their deadlock over the distribution of Cabinet posts in a
Main opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai told
reporters Thursday that former South African President Thabo Mbeki has
been asked to step in to help break the deadlock. Mr. Mbeki mediated
previous talks between the two sides.
Tsvangirai says the
parties are at an impasse, but that the fundamental contents of the
power-sharing agreement remain intact. He said he remains confident a
deal can be worked out.
Zimbabwean state media has said the
parties agree on all but two ministries: Home Affairs and Finance.
But the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, MDC, says there is
no agreement on any of 10 key ministries.
On Wednesday a
negotiator for the ruling ZANU-PF party accused the opposition of
jeopardizing the talks by trying to negotiate through public
A power-sharing agreement reached last month calls
for ZANU-PF to control 15 Cabinet positions, with the two factions of
the MDC getting 16. The MDC has accused ZANU-PF of demanding all of
the most important ministries.
Zimbabwe has been without an
official government for months following disputed presidential
elections. MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai won the most votes in the
first round in March, but pulled out of the June runoff because of
alleged state-sponsored violence against his supporters.
The runoff, won by longtime President Robert Mugabe, was dismissed by many nations as a sham.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.