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Subject: Zimbabwe youth militia camps featured in Time Magazine

Congressman Royce, chairman of the House Africa Subcommittee in the United
States Congress, speaks out on targeted sanctions against Zimbabwe (see
bold paras):


Mugabe's Campers

Chilling stories from inside the youth camps that supply Zimbabwe's
President with his brutal militias


Debbie was buying vegetablesat the market when the young men started to
harass her. It was 2001 and Zimbabwe was in the grip of election fever. A
group of young vigilantes chanting slogans in support of President Robert
Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF party told the lanky 22-year-old that she had to
come with them. She says they chased her home, jumped her fence, and
threatened to firebomb her house unless she came out. Finally, her uncle
told her to go. She was taken to a youth camp outside Bulawayo; she could
tell by the ZANU-PF T shirts some in the camp wore that it was run by the
government. That night, she says, the boys came into her dormitory, locked
the doors, and took turns raping her. "They told me, 'If you cry, if you
make a noise we'll beat you'," she recalls, in a quiet voice, her eyes
downcast. Debbie says she was raped almost every night for the next six
months. And every day, she was put through an arduous physical training
program that included push-ups and 20-km runs. She was also trained how to
kill: by strangling with shoelaces, by stabbing with a knife. "They told me
it's a secret for life. 'If you tell anyone you'll be killed.'"

Debbie tried to escape the camp three times. Once, when she was caught, she
was buried up to her neck as punishment. She finally fled after the camp
was closed following the 2002 elections. She now lives in South Africa, but
remains terrified that her former captors will somehow find her.

Debbie is far from alone in her suffering. In interviews conducted for the
BBC's Panorama TV program in the slums of Johannesburg, dozens of youths -
some traumatized like Debbie, many others now laden with guilt - described
similar experiences in government-run camps around Zimbabwe in which youths
are, the witnesses say, trained to maim, torture and kill. Youths who have
fled the camps say they are used to train Mugabe's feared youth militia -
known as the Green Bombers after the uniforms some wear - that have been so
ruthlessly effective at suppressing opposition to the regime. The youths
attack suspected opposition supporters with sticks or iron bars, and are
known for their brutality. The Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum, based in
Harare, estimates they beat thousands of government opponents in the run-up
to the 2002 elections. The Peace Solidarity Trust, another Zimbabwe-based
rights group, says they commit the majority of torture that occurs in

First set up in late 2001, the camps are officially part of the National
Youth Service Training Program, which the government says teaches job
skills and patriotism. The witnesses who spoke to the BBC - including
former officials who helped run the camps as well as former inmates -
identified six remote sites across Zimbabwe; each, they say, holds hundreds
of people. The training, which involves not just a grueling program of
physical activity but also frequent beatings and food deprivation, slowly
breaks people down, then inculcates absolute loyalty to the party.

Take the story of Daniel, 24, who declined to give his real name. Thickset
and muscular, he slouches back in his chair as he speaks of raping girls in
his camp. He had volunteered for the camps hoping to improve his skills as
a carpenter. Instead, when he got there, he says, he was given alcohol,
drugs and lessons in how to beat and kill. He was so good at the training
that he was soon promoted to lead a platoon of youths. "I was told by the
commander to rape," he says. "You can sleep with three or four the same
night. I was enjoying it because I was only choosing the nice girls."

Like several older boys who were interviewed, Daniel says he was also
trained to torture his victims. "You can enjoy it because your mind has
been disturbed," he says, recalling how he used to make his victims stand
in a pool of water while electrocuting them in bursts. Other youths say
they were trained to hold victims' heads under water, or to force them to
sit on ants' nests. Many of those who escaped the camps say there are rooms
set aside for torture.

Almost 100 escapees have so far been interviewed by the BBC and Zimbabwean
human-rights groups. Based on interviews with escapees, human-rights groups
estimate that at least half the girls in the camps are regularly raped. A
former government official from Zimbabwe's Ministry of Youth, Gender and
Employment Creation says the rape is seen by some at the camps as part of
the youths' training. "You are molding someone to listen to you, so if it
means rapes have to take place in order for that person to take instruction
from you, then it's O.K.," he says. Another ministry insider, who left his
job in disgust, said he wrote numerous memos to his superiors about the
rapes, but was ignored.

As part of their training, some youths are sent out to beat their own
relatives, especially if their family members are critical of the
government. Thomas, 23, who was kept in a camp in the west of the country,
was forced to attack his own mother. "The commanders told me, 'If you don't
want to beat her we will beat you,'" he says. "I beat her with a stick."
Such attacks make it almost impossible for the attackers to return to their
communities, which in turn makes it easier for the government to control
and indoctrinate them. For several hours a day youths in at least six known
camps across the country attend lessons where they are taught that
opposition supporters are ruining Zimbabwe. This helps them rationalize
their violence. "They have to take out the stuff which you have in your
mind and put in new stuff which is literally brainwashing," says one man
who has been through the camps. With no adults to trust, the youths learn
to obey even the most terrible orders.

One camp commander told the BBC that youths in his camp killed two
opposition supporters two years ago. "My superiors instructed that the
people must be eliminated," he says. Human-rights groups in Zimbabwe say
they know the location of graves where they believe other victims killed in
the last two years are buried.

Mugabe's government recently more than doubled the budget for the ministry
responsible for the camps. Ministers have publicly said it is compulsory
for every Zimbabwean youth to attend several months of training, though
this is not enshrined in Zimbabwean law. "These guys are going to be used
by the ruling party," says the camp commander, who has already received his
instructions prior to the next elections. "Our main concern is that we keep
this opposition party out of power."

After the Panorama program aired in Britain late last month, Zimbabwe's
government denounced its content as "lies" and Western propaganda designed
to misrepresent the political situation in Zimbabwe. The government said
the camps were used to teach youths patriotism, discipline and
entrepreneurial skills. "National Youth Service graduates have no record of
violent behavior," said a statement from the ministry. "No youth, not even
one, has ever been coerced to join the National Youth Service," it added.
Zimbabwe's Youth Minister, Ambrose Mutinhiri, dismissed allegations that
girls in the camps were raped, saying they were safely accommodated in
their own hostels "cordoned off with a razor-wire fence" and guarded by

In Washington last Wednesday, Zimbabwe's human-rights record dominated a
congressional human-rights hearing held by the Committee on International
Relations. "The Mugabe regime takes what excess foreign exchange it can
obtain and it uses [it] to open new camps," said Congressman Ed Royce,
chairman of the subcommittee on Africa, who says he will now ask the
Zimbabwean government for access to the camps. Two weeks ago, not long
after the State Department released its annual human-rights report, which
condemned Zimbabwe for using "torture by various methods" against those
politically opposed to Mugabe's regime, the United States tightened "smart"
sanctions on Zimbabwe by banning transactions with a number of companies
with suspected links to ministers close to Mugabe.

"I would like to see a more vigorous effort on the part of the government
in the E.U. and our government to track down Robert Mugabe's assets," said
Royce, adding that he thought African governments, in particular South
Africa's President Thabo Mbeki, were not sufficiently critical of
Zimbabwe's human-rights record. And in South Africa two weeks ago the
leader of the opposition Democratic Alliance Party, Tony Leon, asked the
International Criminal Court to open an investigation into Mugabe's
human-rights record. As of late last week Leon's office said the ICC had
not responded.

The morning after her first night of rape, three years ago, Debbie went to
the camp commander to ask for medical help. She was punished for
complaining. "He told me the rape is part of training," she says. Eight
months later Debbie discovered she was pregnant; more recently she
discovered that she is HIV positive. Her 1-year-old daughter Nunus leaps
around happily, unaware of the horrific circumstances in which her life
came about. Debbie is likely to be dead before the child grows up. Two
weeks ago, she sent a friend in South Africa an SMS message from her safe
house. I WANT A GUN, she wrote. The next line said joking, but it was hard
to believe that was true.
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Sent: Friday, March 12, 2004 11:53 PM
Subject: Attempted abduction

Dear All
Tonite, our 21 year old daughter was the victim of what we believe to be an attempted abduction, by a group of young black men, dressed in the garb of the so called 'green bombers', within yards of our own front door. She was on the Domboshawa Road, at approx 21.20 hrs, just passing Wheeldon Drive, when she became aware of lights flashing up close behind her. When she didn't pull over, the vehicle overtook her, slowing down as it passed, trying to force her off the road.
It tried to run her off the road at least 3 times on the Domboshawa Road, before she pulled in to the BP garage at Helensvale, where she hoped the lights and the presence of other people would help. Two vehicles pulled up behind her and boxed her into a parking space, one a red truck, the other a cream/white saloon car. Luckily, she had the presence of mind to wind up her window and lock her doors! One of the guys got out of a truck and demanded her driving licence, trying to get her to believe he was a police officer. Any of you who happen to know my daughter, will know she is no shrinking violet, and has a mouth to match her mother's. She demanded to know, why he wanted her driving licence, as he wasn't even a police officer. ( She knew exactly what he was because, thank God, she had seen the BBC report on the green bombers only a few days before). He muttered something about not having 'given way' at a road sign. She told him that the Domboshawa Road doesn't have a give way sign on it at the point they tried to force her off the road, so he obviously didn't either know the road to well, or his knowledge of traffic violations was defective!. He continued with the pretence of being a police officer, but she was having none of it!
At this point she became aware of at least 9 other black youths, similarly dressed in this green overall style uniform, who started to bang on her windows and tried pulling the doors open. She opened her window a fraction, and told them she would NOT get out the vehicle under any circumstances. She said she remained polite, as she feared they would pull a gun on her at any point, but she was adamant she would not get out. She asked him to explain what law she had broken, then she would drive across the road to Borrowdale police station and deal with the real police officers there. I think at this point, they realised, as I often have, that there was no point in trying to get her to co-operate, as she clearly was not going too. He then gestured to the others to get in the vehicles, and they moved off.
She said it felt like an eternity, but was probably all over in 15 mins, but it has left her feeling shocked, angry and very vulnerable.
Personally, I can't put in writing what I'd like to do to them if I got my hands on them, as there is probably some bloody law or other that I would be contravening! Guys, we all need to look out for our kids, no matter how old they are, or think they are. These are NOT safe times we're living in. These young 'green bomber' idiots think they can do what they like with impunity, because they are certain in the knowledge, NOTHING is going to happen to them even if they were found out!
Tonite, our daughter could have been abducted, raped and murdered, and we would have not known where to start looking for her or indeed the culprits. How long can we continue to think it is not going to happen to us or our families? Who of you out there is going to be next? Surely, surely there is something we can and must do as a group of caring parents, because no one else is going to!!!!
Please, please guys, you need to instil in your children that they can no longer be cavalier in their attitudes to safety. Our daughter is 21, and the only thing that saved her tonite was her knowledge of the situation here and her down right bloody mindedness about her own safety. 
I don't mind if you wish to pass this on to other friends, infact, the more people who know the better. At least then we might start to have a fighting chance of protecting our precious children.
To all of you, go safely
K and P
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Sunday Times (SA)

New, shock charge for 'mercenaries'

Wednesday March 17, 2004 07:08 - (SA)

HARARE - Zimbabwe's prosecutors have surprised 70 men arrested last week
over an alleged coup plot in Equatorial Guinea by formally presenting them
with a new charge, that of plotting to murder the president of the country,
Teodoro Mbasogo.

The men already face charges of attempting to buy arms illegally and all but
three face a further charge of breaking immigration regulations.

Lawyers have said the government had been searching for legislation imposing
more severe punishment against the men.

"They were given another charge today," said Jonathan Samkange, their
defence lawyer, after he left Chikurubi Prison Harare on Harare's outskirts,
where the group is being held.

"They are accused of conspiring to murder the president of Equatorial

"The police and the attorney-general say they will be brought to court
Wednesday at 10am," he added.

The governments of Zimbabwe and Equatorial Guinea governments reported
arrests last week here and in Malabo, the capital, of different groups they
said were co-ordinating a plot to oust the tiny oil-rich West African
state's 62-year-old leader.

Authorities in Harare said that the Boeing had 727 flown from South Africa
with 64 alleged mercenaries and three crew members to Harare, where they
were to be met by an advance party of three who were to have purchased a
range of AK47 rifles, light machine guns, pistols, mortars, rocket launchers
and grenades meant to be used in a coup in the former Spanish colony.

In what government officials said was a joint intelligence operation
involving the governments of South Africa, Zimbabwe and Equatorial Guinea,
the plane was impounded as soon as it landed at Harare international airport
and the 67 passengers and crew were arrested, as were an advance party.

The leader of the advance group was named as Simon Mann, an old Etonian and
former officer of the British Special Air Services Regiment and said to be
the founder of the now defunct South African mercenary recruitment
organisation, Executive Outcomes, and connected to its British-based
successor, Sandline International.

"All 70 have denied the allegation," Samkange said. "It's nonsensical. They
are going to have big problems with the jurisdiction of the court over an
offence that has may have taken place in several countries."

Last week foreign minister Stanislaus Mudenge said the group would face "the
severest punishment in our statute books, including capital punishment," but
up until Tuesday, acting attorney-general Bharat Patel was saying the only
legislation in Zimbabwean law that could be used were immigration
regulations and firearms control legislation, regarded much lesser offences.

A conviction for conspiracy to murder in a plot that had not been carried
out and in which no-one had been hurt could not possibly carry the death
sentence, senior lawyers said.

"It could result in a fairly long prison term," said one lawyer. A South
African, Nic du Toit, has appeared on Guinean state television where he
"confessed" to being a conspirator in the alleged coup plot.

Zimbabwe government ministers have claimed that the alleged attempt was
backed by MI6, the British espionage agency, the United States' Central
Intelligence Agency and the Spanish secret service. All have vigorously
denied the claim.

The government says the men arrested on the aircraft were South Africans,
Angolans, Namibians, Democratic Republic of Congo nationals and one
Zimbabwean. Their lawyers say they all carry South African passports.

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MDC Suspends Acting Mayor Makwavarara

The Herald (Harare)

March 17, 2004
Posted to the web March 16, 2004


THE MDC Harare province yesterday suspended acting Harare mayor Ms Sekesayi
Makwavarara for allegedly defying a directive by the party's leader Mr
Morgan Tsvangirai that she should step down to allow for elections to choose
a new deputy mayor.

The province also recommended to the MDC national disciplinary committee
that Ms Makwavarara be expelled from the party.

This is the second time the MDC's Harare province has suspended Ms
Makwavarara, having done so in October last year only to reinstate her a few
days later.

However, the suspension does not affect her responsibilities as acting mayor
because only the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National
Housing, Cde Ignatius Chombo can terminate her services as provided for in
the Urban Councils Act.

The Act does not recognise suspensions and expulsions done at party level.

This is unlike in Parliament where if an MP is suspended by his or her party
or joins another party, he or she stops attending the business of the
legislature representing that party.

MDC Harare province disciplinary committee chairman and Budiriro Member of
Parliament Mr Gilbert Shoko confirmed the suspension.

Ms Makwavarara was supposed to have attended a disciplinary committee
hearing on Monday but there was a mix-up of the time. According to a letter
written to her by Mr Shoko, the hearing was to take place at 4.30 am.

Ms Makwavarara insists she attended the disciplinary hearing at the stated
venue and at the appointed hour but found the committee not present.

Mr Shoko said the committee sat at 4.30 pm and gave a default judgement.

"She did not turn up for the hearing, hence the committee invoked section
5(10) to proceed with the hearing in the absence of S. Makwavarara," said Mr

He said the committee had found Ms Makwavarara guilty of charges against her
and decided to suspend her pending a recommendation to the national
executive asking for her expulsion.

"Our powers go as far as suspending her, the issue of expulsion rests with
the national executive," he said.

Mr Shoko said Ms Makwavarara should have notified his committee of the
anomaly in the time given for the hearing rather than operate on

Ms Makwavarara said the charges against her were not significant because as
mayor, one was supposed to be above party politics and work towards serving
the people irrespective of party affiliation.

She said the statutes of the Urban Councils Act directed the office of mayor
and that its operations fell outside political party directives.

"I will continue to fulfill the provisions of the Act," she said.

But Mr Shoko said the decision on whether Ms Makwavarara would remain as
councillor remained with the people of Mabvuku who elected her.

There are some inconsistencies in the letters written to Ms Makwavarara over
the same issue since last year. The first letter asked her to step down as a
member of the Harare City Council executive committee but the letter of
suspension written yesterday said she had refused to step down as acting

Ms Makwavarara is acting mayor in the absence of suspended mayor Engineer
Elias Mudzuri and is also a member of the Harare executive committee by
virtue of her being deputy mayor. She chairs the executive committee in the
absence of Eng Mudzuri.
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MDC Accused of Intimidating Judiciary

The Herald (Harare)

March 17, 2004
Posted to the web March 16, 2004


The MDC has with the help of the Law Society of Zimbabwe written to the
Judge President Justice Paddington Garwe claiming that the judgment in the
election petition by its leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai challenging the
election of President Mugabe has been outstanding for too long, in a move
observers have described as an attempt to intimidate the judiciary and
interfere with the judicial process.

This is despite the fact that the case is voluminous and involves multitudes
of paperwork, which were made even more voluminous by the many applications
related to the main election petition made by Mr Tsvangirai.

In a letter under the name of one Ms Olivia Zulu, the Law Society of
Zimbabwe (LSZ) alleges that it has received submissions from various of its
members with cases which have been outstanding for more than three months.

Astonishingly, the list which has 18 judges who are yet to make judgments in
a number of cases is headed by Justice Ben Hlatshwayo with Mr Tsvangirai's
election petition on the top yet it is one of only four cases heard in
November 2003 out of a list of 70 cases, some of them heard in early 2003
and others in 2002.

A lawyer familiar with this latest development said the letter from the LSZ
"was an example of overzealous activism in pursuit of a political agenda
having nothing to do with the cause of justice".

The lawyer added that the letter was a poorly disguised attempt to
politicise the petition by Mr Tsvangirai by seeking to force the judge to
hurry through what was publicly shown to be voluminous submissions to the
court especially from the MDC leader's lawyers.

The MDC had a 200-page document in which it made its arguments for the
election to be nullified.

"It is in the interest of justice that the court takes the necessary time to
go through the submissions. It is about three months since judgment in the
case was reserved and three months in a case like this is nothing as it
normally takes between six and 18 months for courts to come up with
decisions in matters of this kind," said the lawyer.

Another lawyer said it was surprising for the LSZ to represent all these
clients including Mr Tsvangirai when the parties involved have their own
lawyers who should be approaching the court and are paid to do that.

Analysts said the MDC was panicking after President Mugabe recently
announced that next year's parliamentary elections would be held in March.
"They do not know whether they are coming or going. They are panicking and
no wonder they have been talking about boycotting the elections," said one

Justice Hlatshwayo heard submissions by lawyers representing Mr Tsvangirai
and President Mugabe on November 3 and 4 last year.

The main election petition was only heard last year although Mr Tsvangirai
filed his petition in April 2002 soon after the presidential election held
in March because of the numerous related applications which the MDC leader
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Land Acquisition Amendment Now Law

The Herald (Harare)

March 17, 2004
Posted to the web March 16, 2004


PRESIDENT Mugabe has assented to the Land Acquisition Amendment Bill which
seeks to repeal some sections of the Land Acquisition Act and this means
that the Bill is now law.

The Land Acquisition Amendment Act, which was gazetted last week, will
consolidate gains of land reform and remove remaining bottlenecks in the
acquisition process.

One of the major amendments the Act seeks to make is the abolishment of the
requirement that the preliminary notice of acquisition should be served
personally upon the owner of the land to be acquired for resettlement and
the holder of any other registered real right in that land.

This provision has proved to be difficult to implement under the land reform
programme because often the owners no longer occupied the land and could not
otherwise be located.

The preliminary notice will now be only published in the Government Gazette
and this will be deemed to constitute service of notice in writing upon the
owner of the land to be acquired and the holder of any other registered real
right in that land.

The Act repeals sections 6A and 6B of the Land Acquisition Act which provide
for offers of land in substitution for land to be acquired for resettlement

It empowers the Administrative Court to have original jurisdiction to hear
applications by landowners to review the propriety of the decisions or
proceedings of the acquiring authority.

Such applications were heard in the High Court by virtue of its general

Section 8 was amended so that an application order relating to agricultural
land acquired for resettlement purposes is effective from the date of its
publication in the Gazette.

The Land Acquisition Amendment Act also amends the Hippo Valley Agreement
Act enacted in 1964.
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UZ Lecturers Snub Increment

The Herald (Harare)

March 17, 2004
Posted to the web March 16, 2004


LECTURES failed to resume at the University of Zimbabwe yesterday despite
the increase in salaries for academic and non-academic staff.

It was anticipated that following the announcement of an increase in
lecturers' remuneration by the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Dr
Herbert Murerwa, on Monday, the lecturers would return to work.

Cde Murerwa on Monday said the basic pay for all university staff had been
increased by 280 percent.

This means that they will get an additional 30 percent on top of the 250
percent that all civil servants were awarded in January.

Housing allowances had been increased by 613 percent for category A staff,
340 percent for category B and 371 percent for category C staff, while
transport allowances had been increased by 70 percent for category A, 65
percent for category B and 62 percent for category C staff, the minister

Following the release of these figures, the Vice-Chancellor of the UZ,
Professor Levi Nyagura, advised staff and students that normal business
would resume by 8 am yesterday.

However, when The Herald visited the UZ yesterday morning there was very
little activity-taking place.

A few students could be seen loitering around while the lecture rooms were

UZ Acting Director of Information and Publicity Mr Daniel Chihombori said he
only expected things to get back to normal today after workers'
representatives reported back the new figures to their constituents.

"The workers' representatives will be meeting their members tomorrow (today)
and after that I am sure things will be back to normal," he said.

Association of University Teachers secretary-general Mr James Mahlaule would
not confirm whether lecturers would go back to work, saying he would only
know the exact position after reporting back to his membership today.

Students on Monday urged the Government and university staff to reach an
agreement soon, saying they were the ones who suffered most.
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Business Report

      With neighbours like ours, who needs enemies?

      By Edited by Vernon Wessels

      Russell Loubser, the chief executive of the JSE Securities Exchange,
can be forgiven for calling our neighbours morons.

      The JSE has applied to the FTSE to be upgraded from an advanced
emerging grading to a developed market.

      South Africa has a highly sophisticated financial market, a sound
banking environment and strong companies while our economy has proved more
stable than most emerging markets.

      But Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe and Namibian president Sam
Nujoma seem determined to make fools of other African nations trying to
uplift their international status.

      If international investors and company directors keep reading negative
press about the chaos in Zimbabwe and looming land battles in Namibia, South
Africa will suffer.

      If the country could be cut off geographically and placed somewhere
else, it would be recognised as a developed economy tomorrow, Loubser was
quoted as telling an investment conference this weekend.

      The JSE has done everything possible to win more foreign investment by
tightening its listing requirements and introducing world-class trading and
settlement systems.

      If it does not succeed in winning an upgrade this time, perhaps the
application itself will have heightened perceptions that overall South
Africa is a good investment and should not be thrown in the same basket as
Zimbabwe. VW

      A shining light

      Perhaps Mugabe and Nujoma can learn from the positive experiences of
Mozambican president Joaquim Alberto Chissano.

      Mozambique, one of the world's poorest nations, has started reaping
"democracy dividends" with huge multibillion-rand investments. Undoubtedly,
the country still has a long way to go before it can claim to have conquered
its endemic poverty but it is walking a sensible path.

      Mozal, BHP Billiton's multibillion-rand aluminium smelter, and Sasol,
the top producer of synthetic fuels, have ploughed in billions. More
corporates will follow.

      Mozambique, with a little help from its friends, has created a
reasonably friendly investment climate out of the ashes of civil war. The
investments not only generate revenue for the fiscus and prompt the building
of roads and the clearing of land mines, they create hundreds of temporary,
and permanent, jobs.

      Skills are transferred and entrepreneurs sprout up wherever
communities have more cash to spend. Business tourism is boosted and a host
of upstream and downstream businesses have set up shop.

      The progress in Mozambique should serve as a wake-up call that good
political and fiscal governance can lead to better economic success. QW

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New Zimbabwe

Gwisai says MDC will be crushed in polls

By Clemence Manyukwe
THE radical former Highfield MP Munyaradzi Gwisai has warned that the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change is "headed for slaughter" unless
it boycotts next's year's parliamentary elections.

Gwisai who was expelled from the party for his radical socialist views and
open criticism of the party leadership warns that "elitist forces" have
ganged up with "the rich" and "intellectuals" to fuel the bickering within
the opposition ranks.

In an interview with the Daily Mirror newspaper, Gwisai tore into MDC leader
Morgan Tsvangirai saying he had much to answer for what is happening within
the party which is battling endless internal feuds.

Gwisai told the paper that the MDC will be "slaughtered by Zanu PF" because
most ordinary people are now disillusioned by the MDC leadership and also
because free and fair polls are not possible under the present constitution.

"The infighting in the MDC is being caused by the elitist forces- the rich
and intellectuals- who have never been committed to the economic war or the
struggle against Zanu PF dictatorship.

"The party's leadership had a golden opportunity in 2000 and in 2002 to come
to power through the ballot or through the streets, but they fiddled. Now
they are headed for a slaughter house in 2005."

Gwisai said although there are reports of some party officials going out of
step with the party president, they would not achieve much as "they have no
real alternative", the paper reported.

Gwisai addressed the feuds caused by the nomination of parliamentary
candidates by the MDC leadership saying "some of these people now want to
pretend to be democrats against the imposition of candidates, forgetting
that in 2000 there were no primary elections and in 1999 the interim
executive was hand- picked by the same Tsvangirai."

The university law lecturer's sentiments come in the wake of widening
differences in the party which have stirred up agitation which observers
fear may lead to splits in the party.

MDC secretary general Welshman Ncube who was rumoured to have threatened to
quit has hit out at the doomsayers saying the party was strong and would be
going as a unit into the next election, should it choose to participate.

Fears of a major split were fuelled by comments by the MDC leader during a
campaign rally at the weekend in Zengeza (James Makore is the MDC candidate
for the Zengeza seat in the March 27 and 28 by-election) where he threatened
to sack from the party people he termed "sellouts" who were supping with
Zanu PF.

Gwisai seemed to concur with the opposition party president on some issues
such as the need to weed out some elements from the party and boycotting
next year's parliamentary poll, the Mirror report said.

He singled was for the expulsion acting Harare mayor Sekesai Makwavarara
"whom Tsvangirai allowed to gate-crush in 2000." Makwavarara was said
suspended this week for insubordination and is due before the party's
disciplinary committee.

Gwisai, who is the president of the International Socialist Organisation in
Zimbabwe said: "We now have a de facto Zanu PF council that has declared war
on the people judging by their budget. Makwavarara now has the power so she
no longer cares. She must be booted out of the party and there must be put
people who are ready to dare (Ignatius) Chombo."
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Rehabilitate Street People As Family Units

The Herald (Harare)

March 17, 2004
Posted to the web March 16, 2004


THE recent clean-up operation to rid Harare of street people has not been

These people have slowly trickled back into the sanitary lanes of the
capital city and it is back to square one.

Half of the children that were also taken to children's homes during that
operation are now all over the pavements, raising questions as to how
effective these measures are.

The one major problem noted in that operation was the separation of children
from their parents.

These are families on the streets who were further disintegrated by taking
away their infants and placing them in homes.

Their parents were bundled into lorries and literally dumped on farms with
no support mechanisms for them.

Surely, how can you take a mother to a farm and child to an institution when
the goal to ensuring child protection is also to keep families together?

Zimbabwe, unfortunately, does not have programmes targeted at rehabilitating
street people as family units and for as long as this gap is not attended
to, these removals will never realise any result.

Most children living on Harare's streets are offspring of homeless people
who have absolutely nowhere to go.

Some do not have families and, coupled with the economic meltdown, the
extended family has also abandoned them.

Among the street people are juvenile delinquents, a result of an assortment
of problems that include physical and sexual abuse and lack of parental

Some of these children are psychologically traumatised due to domestic
violence involving parents and family counselling is most vital if the
street people phenomenon is to be curtailed.

The sad thing about these operations is that all stakeholders will meet and
discuss the fate of these people without even getting input from them.

We should be asking ourselves why these children are running away from their
families and also why they are running away from the institutions where they
are being placed.

And why have the street adults fled from the farms they had been relocated

This clean-up reminds us of what happened in September 1991 when the then
Harare Town Clerk Mr Edward Kanengoni sought the eviction of squatters from
Mbare because they would be an embarrassment to Queen Elizabeth II, who was
due to visit Zimbabwe the following month.

The question to ask is: Did that operation rid us of the problem in its

The answer is no.

Instead what has happened is that following the relocation of these
squatters to Porta Farm, Dzivare-sekwa Extension and Hatcliffe Extension,
more and worse problems have emerged.

Just because these people are regarded as filthy does not mean that they
deserve sub-standard treatment.

Any street person will tell you that they don't enjoy that life.

Once these children have lived on the streets for too long they become
social misfits and to integrate them back into family or society is yet
another long and gradual process.

It would be interesting to find out if there is really a budget targeted to
look into these problems because all these clean-up operations are just a
mere waste of time.
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Zimbabwe not able to pay IMF

March 17, 2004, 08:27

Eric Bloch, a Zimbabwean economic commentator, says Zimbabwe does not have
the ability to pay off the money it owes the International Monetary Fund
(IMF). "It's only able to make some very token gesture payments, as a
gesture of good faith," Bloch said this morning.

This follows reports that a seven-member team from the IMF is in Zimbabwe
for a two-week routine visit to assess the country's economic situation. The
visit comes after an announcement by the Zimbabwean government that it wants
to settle its debt with the IMF and other international lenders, estimated
at around $4.5 billion.

Last year the IMF began initiating the compulsory withdrawal of the Southern
African country due to lack of cooperation and unpaid debt. It notably cited
arrears of more than $270 million running back almost three years. Bloch
said it would take many years before the country could clear all its

Bloch said Zimbabwe owes the IMF alone a total of $680 million, with the
$270 million being the longest standing arrears. "But even that portion of
the debt is beyond Zimbabwe's means until there is a dramatic change to the
Zimbabwean economy." He said the country aims to negotiate with the IMF to
settle the debt progressively. "In fact they have made the first very
nominal payment to the IMF of $2 million which is below 2% of the arrears."

He said the country did not even have enough foreign exchange to meet
ongoing essentials such as fuel, electricity, medications, water and raw
material for industry.

The government of Robert Mugabe is widely blamed for sub-standard economic
policies and corruption which has seen an unprecedented decline in the
country's economy in the past few years.
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From The Independent (UK), 16 March

A murderous dictator, his rapper son and a $700m-a-year oil boom

The grounding of a mystery plane, allegedly carrying mercenaries, has
focuses attention on the West African state of Equatorial Guinea and its
despotic leader. Declan Walsh reports on a would-be coup that sounds like a
plot from Dallas.

On the steamy shores of West Africa, oil seldom brings good tidings.
Equatorial Guinea, the nugget-sized nation at the heart of last week's
bungled apparent coup attempt, is no exception. A despotic leader, his
playboy-rapper son, scheming relatives and thousands of American oil men are
the characters of a twisted plot that reads like Dallas set in equatorial
Africa. And although attention has focused on 67 alleged mercenaries
arrested in Zimbabwe, a far greater intrigue swirls around the dictatorial
regime of President Teodoro Obiang Nguema. Mr Obiang, who came to power by
overthrowing his uncle and shooting him, has survived 25 years in power by
stuffing the government with relatives, torturing opponents and rigging
elections. His would be a perfect banana republic, if it had bananas.
Instead it has oil - lots of it. Mr Obiang's iron fist turned to gold in the
mid 1990s when US oil firms made massive offshore discoveries. Overnight,
the former Spanish colony shot from poverty-stricken obscurity to fabulous
wealth, becoming known as the "Kuwait of Africa". Large oil companies, led
by ExxonMobil, invested $6bn in operations that now pump 350,000 barrels of
oil a day.

More than 3,000 US oil workers are manning the pumps, and business is so
brisk there are direct flights from Houston to the island's capital, Malabo.
Equatorial Guinea has become Africa's third-largest oil producer, after
Nigeria and Angola, and its fastest growing economy. "The oil has been for
us like the manna that the Jews ate in the desert," Mr Obiang told CBS last
year. The vast majority of Guineans, however, have yet to taste that sweet
bread. The majority of the vast state oil revenues - up to $700m this year -
has been salted into foreign bank accounts. Many are controlled by Mr
Obiang. Most of the country's 500,000 people scrape by on $2 a day, and
human development indicators have barely budged since oil was struck. "There
is no evidence that any of the oil wealth has gone to the people," said
Sarah Wykes of the lobby group Global Witness, which later this month will
release a report linking the Obiang regime to large-scale corruption and
drug trafficking. The US oil companies appear unconcerned by the
allegations. Last year ExxonMobil threw a party in Washington in Mr Obiang's
honour - one year after he held presidential elections that gave him 97 per
cent of the vote. The result suggested a slight fall in popularity over the
previous poll, in which he won 99.2 per cent.

Western business has followed on the heels of the Texan oil men with gusto.
Only 15 years ago Malabo had just one hotel with no electricity, food or
running water. Two cars in the street was a traffic jam, and the phone
directory had just two pages, listing subscribers by their first name. The
airport terminal was a tin-roofed shack that received just one international
flight. Today, however, the French have built a mobile phone network, sports
utility vehicles whizz through the streets, and several international
carriers service the smart new airport terminal. Prostitutes clamour around
the gates of several new hotels. The US re-opened its embassy in October
last year, following an eight-year closure in protest at torture and other
human rights abuses. At around the same time the Dutch carrier KLM renamed
one of its planes after Mr Obiang, to mark the opening of the new airport
terminal. "It was like calling a plane Pol Pot," said one analyst. A
campaign against US involvement in Equatorial Guinea is building. The
influential US news programme 60 Minutes criticised the pact between Mr
Obiang and the oil companies last autumn. The latest State Department human
rights report, released last month, cataolgued an array of police torture,
arbitrary arrest and detention and the failure of the courts to administer
justice. In Washington, the FBI has started investigating a $700m bank
account at the Riggs Bank, of which Mr Obiang is apparently the main
signatory. One bank employee has already lost his job over the scandal.

But the greatest threat to Mr Obiang's dictatorial dominance comes from his
own family. The president has been sick, reportedly from prostate cancer,
and tensions have arisen among the ruling clan over his succession plans.
Some are worried over apparent plans to hand power to his son Teodorin - a
government minister, rap music entrepreneur and international playboy. The
30-something Teodorin parties in Rio de Janeiro, does business in Hollywood
and lives at five-star hotels in Paris, where he drives in Bentley and
Lamborghini cars. Some years ago he invested several hundred thousand
dollars to start his own rap label, TNO Entertainment, standing for Teodorin
Nguema Obiang. It apparently failed to release any records, but according to
Hollywood gossip he has had a relationship with the American rap star Eve.
Teodorin is also fond of female company from other countries - according to
one associate, he once turned up for a meeting in Paris accompanied by
several Russian women. He is a keen property investor, owning a $6m mansion
in Bel Air. But when he tried to buy a multi-million dollar apartment in New
York - in a building where the arms superdealer Adnan Khashoggi once lived -
the board of management rejected his application.

His frequent absences have called into question his ability to run the
Ministry of Infrastructure and Public Works, although he did head up his
father's extraordinarily successful 2002 election campaign. The president is
reportedly worried about his son's partying and has appealed to confidantes
to help temper his wilder excesses - presumably to help pave the way for a
leadership succession. This worries Mr Obiang's relatives, who hold the top
positions in the government and military. In particular it has bothered the
president's brother, Armengol Ondo Nguema, the national security chief.
According to documents obtained by The Independent, Armengol has close links
with Nick du Toit - the 48-year-old South African mercenary who last week
admitted to helping plan the putative coup. Both men are shareholders in
Triple Options, a joint venture company established last October to provide
"security services" to Mr Obiang, but which the government now says is
implicated in the plot to topple him. Africa sleuths remain mystified about
who is behind the coup plot - if there ever was one at all.

Suspicions have been raised by Mr du Toit's appearance on national
television to admit his complicity in the apparent coup, only hours after
the plane of 70 mercenaries was arrested in Harare. Appearing relaxed and
composed, he enjoyed a more peaceful fate than most failed putchists in
Equatorial Guinea, who might expect to have their toenails removed over
several days before being allowed to speak in public. Mr du Toit said he
planned to force Mr Obiang into exile, allowing the opposition leader Severo
Moto Nsa to seize power. Mr Moto, who lives in exile in Spain, has denied
any involvement in the plot. The task of finding the culprit is complicated
by the almost universal unpopularity of the Obiang regime. It is involved in
high-profile border disputes with neighbouring Gabon and Cameroon over
remote and possibly oil-rich areas; and most of the opposition is jailed or
in exile. Last month an American human rights lobby group put Mr Obiang at
sixth place in its gallery of the world's 10 worst dictators. In 2002, for
instance, he had more than 70 political opponents jailed. Some were hung in
positions designed to break their bones, and at least two died. Those who
have not fled into exile in Spain have been detained at the notorious Black
Beach prison, where opponents say they have been tortured by Obiang family
members. "If you've ever seen a person limp on both legs, you know you're in
Equatorial Guinea," said the former US ambassador to Equatorial Guinea, John

The government is also tainted by allegations of drug trafficking. In 1997 a
former Information Minister, Santos Pasqual Bikomo, was arrested in Madrid
with 14 kilos of heroin, allegedly from Pakistan. Currently serving a
nine-year sentence, he alleges that other government figures were involved
in the drugs trade. According to research by Global Witness, which
specialises in investigating oil corruption, at least 10 Equatorial Guineans
travelling on diplomatic passports have been arrested on drugs trafficking
charges since the late 1980s. The independent press has been beaten into
silence and even the foreign press is not safe. A local correspondent for
the French news service AFP was jailed for eight days in November last year
after writing "scurrilous" stories. Instead, the state media bring greasy
sycophancy to new depths. Mr Obiang has "all power over men and things",
state radio said last year, adding: "He can decide to kill ... because it is
God himself, with whom he is in permanent contact, who gives him this
strength." US interest in censoring Mr Obiang's abuses has waned in tandem
with the flood of investment. For example, after the sham 2002 elections the
European Union issued a stern condemnation. In contrast the US State
Department reaction was notably muted. The US increasingly sees West Africa
as a "safe" source of oil, far from the Muslim world and OPEC price
controlling countries. Sub-Saharan African already supplies 15 per cent of
US imports, which the Bush administration hopes will rise to 25 per cent in
the coming decade.

Other countries have more mixed relations. The South African president Thabo
Mbeki recently strengthened relations, and the Spanish foreign minister Ana
Palacio visited in November last year. However yesterday Equatorial Guinea
threatened to recall its ambassador to Spain over allegations the Spanish
government was behind the coup plot. The 67 alleged mercenaries detained in
Zimbabwe are due to make their first court appearance today. Led by the
former SAS commando and Old Etonian, Simon Mann, they are accused of acting
like characters from the Frederick Forsyth novel, The Dogs of War - a
thriller about a mining executive who hires a group of mercenaries to
overthrow an African government and install a puppet dictator so he can mine
platinum. But the alleged mercenaries give a different explanation - that
they en route to Eastern Congo to protect an unnamed mine as part of a
legitimate contract. "It is all a dreadful misunderstanding," said Charles
Burrow, an executive with the Channel Islands-registered company that owns
their impounded Boeing 727 plane. However Africa Confidential, a respected
newsletter, says that they had in fact stopped to pick up weapons for a
planned coup. According to a quoted contract, the team had already paid
$180,000 to Zimbabwean army officers for a consignment of AK-47 guns,
mortars and 30,000 rounds of ammunition. Whatever the truth, when their
plane landed in Harare their plans went disastrously wrong. The coming trial
may shed further light on their bizarre adventure and - just perhaps - on
the intrigues of a tiny oil-rich yet fragile nation 2,000 miles away.
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Southern Africa: Concerns Over Regional Flooding

UN Integrated Regional Information Networks

March 17, 2004
Posted to the web March 17, 2004


Concern is growing in Southern Africa over the risk of serious flooding
during the current rainy season which could further exacerbate food

According to the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Early Warning
Unit, many rivers across the region are in flood, or threatening to spill
their banks after recent heavy downpours.

The rising level of the Zambezi River is being anxiously watched. The river
begins in the highlands of Angola and Zambia and flows along the eastern
edge of Namibia's Caprivi Strip to the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe
before flowing through Mozambique to the Indian Ocean.

Officials in the Caprivi reported this week that the water level of the
Zambezi had passed the five metre mark and was rising by 13 to 15
centimetres every day.

"All we have at the moment are reports from farmers in areas along the
Zambezi river who have complained that crops have been submerged because of
the rise of water levels. Many farmers, who generally farm along the lower
plains of the river, have had to move to higher plains for safety. This is
sure to impact on the availability of food in the next few months," Richard
Masundire, a spokesman for the SADC early warning unit, told IRIN.

Local media in Mozambique reported on Wednesday that over 3,000 people in
the central Sofala province were facing severe food shortages due to
destroyed crops caused by flood waters, after the Pungue river burst its
banks two weeks ago.

There were also fears that transport between the Mozambican port of Beira
and landlocked Zimbabwe could be affected if the river rose further.

Heavy rains in Angola destroyed 60 percent of croplands in the central
province of Huambo, dashing hopes that many families would be food secure at
the end of the current growing season. A quarter of the province's 1.5
million people will now need food aid.

Rains in Zimbabwe has resulted in the northeast and southeast areas of the
country being placed under flood alert.

Zimbabwe has been the hardest hit by the regional food shortgaes with five
million in need of food relief.

In Botswana reports indicate that islanders in the northwestern Okavango
Delta have resisted advice from the authorities to vacate their islands,
despite being surrounded by flood waters.

The SADC early warning unit stressed that the recent heavy rains in the
Okavango basin were the highest observed in the last 20 years.
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Suspected soldiers of fortune charged under security law
JOHANNESBURG, - An additional charge under the Public Order and Security Act
(POSA) was brought on Wednesday against the suspected mercenaries held by
the Zimbabwean authorities since last week.

The men were arrested on board a plane that landed at the Harare
International airport and charged with conspiring to murder Equatorial
Guinea's President Teodoro Obiang Nguema and his bodyguard as part of an
alleged coup attempt.

Attorney-General Bharat Patel told IRIN that 67 of the 70 men held were
charged under POSA for attempting to acquire weaponry such as rocket
launchers and grenades, the licensing of which is not covered by Zimbabwe's
Firearms Act.

The men have already been charged with violating the Firearms Act and the
Immigration Act, both carrying minimal sentences.

Defence counsel Jonathan Samkange told IRIN the men were charged with
conspiring to murder Mbasogo and his bodyguard late on Tuesday. "Conspiring
to murder falls under the ambit of common law, so I presume they (the
authorities) will be seeking to try the men under that," he said. The
penalty for attempted murder in Zimbabwe is an unspecified amount of time in

POSA carries a minimum sentence of 10 years but "they were probably
attempting to charge them with a crime carrying a more severe penalty",
Samkange explained. The weaponry listed under the charge related to POSA was
identical to that under the violation of the Firearms Act.

Both Patel and Samkange said the 70 men, including three flight crew, were
likely to make their court appearance this week.

In February this year presidential powers were used to amend the Criminal
Procedure and Evidence Act, which now enables the Zimbabwean police to
detain people for up to a week.

The police can also hold suspects for a further 21 days if prima facie
evidence of their involvement in a crime is produced.


JOHANNESBURG, - An additional charge under the Public Order and Security Act
(POSA) was brought on Wednesday against the suspected mercenaries held by
the Zimbabwean authorities since last week.

The men were arrested on board a plane that landed at the Harare
International airport and charged with conspiring to murder Equatorial
Guinea's President Teodoro Obiang Nguema and his bodyguard as part of an
alleged coup attempt.

Attorney-General Bharat Patel told IRIN that 67 of the 70 men held were
charged under POSA for attempting to acquire weaponry such as rocket
launchers and grenades, the licensing of which is not covered by Zimbabwe's
Firearms Act.

The men have already been charged with violating the Firearms Act and the
Immigration Act, both carrying minimal sentences.

Defence counsel Jonathan Samkange told IRIN the men were charged with
conspiring to murder Mbasogo and his bodyguard late on Tuesday. "Conspiring
to murder falls under the ambit of common law, so I presume they (the
authorities) will be seeking to try the men under that," he said. The
penalty for attempted murder in Zimbabwe is an unspecified amount of time in

POSA carries a minimum sentence of 10 years but "they were probably
attempting to charge them with a crime carrying a more severe penalty",
Samkange explained. The weaponry listed under the charge related to POSA was
identical to that under the violation of the Firearms Act.

Both Patel and Samkange said the 70 men, including three flight crew, were
likely to make their court appearance this week.

In February this year presidential powers were used to amend the Criminal
Procedure and Evidence Act, which now enables the Zimbabwean police to
detain people for up to a week.

The police can also hold suspects for a further 21 days if prima facie
evidence of their involvement in a crime is produced.

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Church urges Zim talks
17/03/2004 21:40  - (SA)

Blessings Mambara

Harare - Church leaders in Zimbabwe have renewed their attempts to initiate
negotiations between the ruling Zanu-PF party and the Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC).

Members of the MDC and Zanu-PF visited South Africa over the past few days -
apparently on invitation of President Thabo Mbeki - to discuss the
possibility of negotiations.

Senior officials of the MDC confirmed that Welshman Ncube, Gibson Sibanda
and Gift Chimanikiri, members of the party's executive committee, met with
Mbeki in South Africa. Attempts to set up a meeting between this group and
Patrick Chinamasa, Zimbabwean minister of justice, in Pretoria were

Bishop Trevor Manghanga, head of the Evangelical Community of Zimbabwe and
spokesperson for the church leaders, said his group was in contact with
Mbeki to inform him about the progress they were making in their attempts.

President Benjamin Mkapa from Zambia, chairperson of the South African
Development Community (SADC), and President Bakili Muluzi of Malawi were
also involved in these attempts, Manghanga said.

The issue of negotiations to find a political solution for Zimbabwe took a
backseat recently after the announcement of the election date caused renewed
tensions between Zanu-PF and the MDC.

The MDC is threatening to boycott next year's election if a list of reforms
is not implemented.

Mebki assured international leaders last year that plans to get negotiations
going were progressing well. A target date to find a political solution was
set for June 30, which many saw as "unrealistic".

Recent changes within the MDC also influenced the negotiation attempts. The
party's shadow minister of foreign affairs, Moses Mzila-Ndlovu, and Sekai
Holland, secretary of international affairs, were dismissed. Their
dismissals allegedly came because of a dispute over the effectiveness of the
party's foreign strategy.

Paul Themba-Nyathi, MDC spokesperson, said the two posts were temporarily
being filled by Sibanda, the party's vice-chairperson.

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International Herald Tribune

      Tyrants and failed states: The world must find a way to intervene
         Clive Soley IHT  Wednesday, March 17, 2004

LONDON A year ago, on March 18, 2003, 412 members of Britain's House of
Commons voted for military action in Iraq and 149 voted against. Iraq was an
extremely divisive issue in Britain, that has now become marred by
unreasonable allegations of lying. Both sides had a strong case and we are
all capable of exaggerating our arguments. That does not mean the
protagonists are liars.
Prime Minister Tony Blair's overemphasis on weapons of mass destruction was
a major tactical error and he has paid a high price for it. But opponents of
the war face difficult questions, too.
The left is clear in its criticisms of the Bush administration. But it is no
use being shocked by the aggressive assertiveness of the right in the United
States if we can't come up with an alternative policy to deal with dictators
in the post-cold war world.
In extreme cases, regime change is not only politically justified but
morally necessary. The military intervention in Kosovo was largely supported
by the left without United Nations support. And it is not always Western
powers that intervene. Tanzania removed Idi Amin and Vietnam overthrew Pol
Pot without UN agreement. India supported Bangladesh's bid to break free of
Pakistan without UN support. But it is the failures to intervene that ought
to shame those who talk about an international community. Who can defend the
way that we sat back and watched the genocide in Rwanda?
The challenge will be to find a way in which regime change can be
legitimized by world opinion. At present we are torn between two equally
unattractive options - to intervene with military force or do nothing. We
need a new policy to enable earlier interventions in failing states.
The central failure with Saddam Hussein was that the world did not act
earlier, when it first became apparent that he had no intention of keeping
the cease-fire agreement of 1991. The United Nations passed no fewer than 17
resolutions on Iraq. It should have stepped up the pressure each time it
passed a resolution that was not obeyed, using military and nonmilitary
A particularly important approach is to use indictment procedures. These
should be initiated at an early stage when there are gross human rights
In Zimbabwe there is currently ample evidence of gross human rights abuse,
including state-sponsored torture, rape and murder. With growing starvation,
state control of food supplies is being used to reward and punish the
So shouldn't we be campaigning for the indictment of President Robert Mugabe
now? Are the rape and torture camps enough? Or will the left just wait to
see how awful it gets and then march through London if anyone threatens to
A graduated process of intervention would start with UN debates followed by
visits by UN officials and heads of state chosen by the United Nations. If
the situation deteriorated, targeted sanctions and indictment procedures
should begin. UN observers could also be placed in the country and if access
or mobility were denied, more forceful measures applied. The failure of the
United Nations to enforce the inspection regime in Iraq encouraged Saddam to
think he could play cat and mouse with the world community.
A U.S. president committed to working with the United Nations and a serious
commitment by the other Security Council members to dealing with despotic
regimes could lead to an effective interventionist policy that would only
use invasion as last resort.
At present the left stands accused of defending the rights of the
nation-state over the human rights of the individual. If we are serious
about our internationalist credentials then we cannot put our fingers in our
ears and drown out the screams of the tortured while condemning those who
intervene. We must give human rights a higher priority than the
Clive Soley is a Labor member of Britain's House of Commons.
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