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Mugabe, Tsvangirai Meet to Discuss Zimbabwe Impasse

Zimbabwe: A Daily Struggle Slideshow

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai are meeting Monday in Harare to try to salvage their power-sharing agreement.

Former South African President Thabo Mbeki, who brokered the deal, says he is optimistic about finalizing plans for a unity government.

The Southern African Development Community convened the meeting amid fears the power-sharing deal was about to unravel after weeks of tense negotiations.

Last week, Tsvangirai refused to go to a similar meeting in Swaziland because Zimbabwe authorities would only issue him emergency travel documents instead of renewing his passport.

Tsvangirai says he is committed to reaching an equitable power-sharing agreement with President Mugabe, but that he will not agree to something just to get a settlement.

Last month, the two leaders signed a deal to form a unity government, however the agreement since stalled over a dispute over how to allocate key cabinet positions.

Under the agreement, the opposition Movement for Democratic Change would control 16 Cabinet posts, with the ruling ZANU-PF party getting 15.

This month, Mr. Mugabe unilaterally gave his ZANU-PF party control of key posts that oversee the military, police and foreign affairs. This led the MDC to threaten to pull out of the deal.

The agreement was designed to end the crisis sparked by Zimbabwe's disputed and widely-dismissed presidential elections earlier this year.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.