Monday, 20 August 2018

Did The MDC Really Call For Zimbabwe Sanctions?

Zanu-PF often makes the claim that it is the opposition that has called for sanctions. The opposition's stance on sanctions has shifted according to its proximity to power.

In 2012, Tendai Biti, then Finance Minister, told a meeting in Washington that "your foreign policy as a country, as America, could be better towards Zimbabwe. You do not deal with very difficult, fragile states by disengagement, by isolation. It does not work".

However, in a post-election interview with the Daily Maverick on August 1 this year, Biti declared that "the international community is not going to be fooled by this madness. We will make sure they don't get a cent." Asked how he would do this, he added: "I can't tell you how but I can tell you we have done it before."
Did The MDC Really Call For Zimbabwe Sanctions?
In testimony before the US foreign relations committee in December, Biti did not expressly call for sanctions as his critics often charge. The closest he got was when responding to a question from Flake on whether or not the US should support debt relief for Zimbabwe. Biti's answer was that debt relief had to be on condition that there were free elections and a smooth power transfer. However, a certain Dhewa Mavhinga called for sanctions to remain in place.

In January 2002, the late leader of the MDC, Morgan Tsvangirai, called on South Africa to cut off fuel and close the border to Zimbabwe in order to deal with Zanu-PF's violent campaigns.
"I think SA will have to go it alone and do something effective on the ground," he told the BBC. "And South Africa should say, 'OK, under those circumstances we are going to cut fuel, we are going to cut transport links'."

However, as Prime Minister under the unity government, Tsvangirai frequently called for the lifting of sanctions on the country. In meetings with Barack Obama, Angela Merkel and other Western leaders, Tsvangirai called for an end to the embargo.

Source - NewsZWire
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