The ZIMBABWE Situation Our thoughts and prayers are with Zimbabwe
- may peace, truth and justice prevail.

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Daily News

      Masaiti flees home

      3/27/2003 7:03:18 AM (GMT +2)

      By Pedzisai Ruhanya Deputy News Editor

      EVELYN Masaiti, the Member of Parliament for Mutasa, has fled her home
and is in hiding.

      Masaiti, a member of the opposition MDC, yesterday said her life was
in danger. She said she had been paid several visits at her Mabelreign home
in Harare by strangers. Masaiti said she fled her home last Thursday,
abandoning her minor children.

      "I am now in hiding, but my biggest worry as a single parent is the
fate of my four children. I do not know what will happen to them. They are
being harassed," she said. The children are Nomalanga, 16, Siketiwe, 9, and
twins Monalisa and Melisa, 6. Asked whether the people visiting Masaiti's
home were State security agents, Wayne Bvudzijena, the police spokesman,
said: "I have heard your story, but I cannot comment."

      Masaiti said it was ill-advised to report to the police in the absence
of her lawyer because of the rampant abuse against MDC supporters in the
aftermath of the mass action called by her party last week. She had already
suffered a lot at the hands of the police, she said.

      "Last year, just before the presidential election, I was assaulted by
soldiers in the charge office at Hauna Police Station. It is most unwise to
place faith in the police force," she said. Masaiti's latest ordeal started
last week when she found an unknown vehicle with total strangers parked near
her gate as she arrived from town.

      "The people in the vehicle did not talk to me. Frightened, I remained
in the car until they left. Soon after they drove off I hurriedly got into
the house," she said. She then decided to go into hiding as a precaution.

      But the suspicious visits did not stop. On Sunday evening, her maid,
Monica Munodzana, called her at her hideout and told her that two men were
looking for her. "Munodzana said the two men did not identify themselves or
why they were looking for me," the MP said.

      Masaiti added that on Monday two men arrived at the house, saying they
were looking for one Dovi. Later in the evening another group came and asked
for her. "On Tuesday two men in plainclothes driving a Defender vehicle, who
identified themselves as policemen, came to my place and said they wanted to
see Matamisa. When my children said there was no one by that name, the men
then said they were looking for me," she said.

      Masaiti said she would seek guidance from Morgan Tsvangirai, the MDC
president, on her next course of action. The government has been widely
criticised for human rights abuses against its opponents.

      The United States and the European Union have slapped government and
ruling Zanu PF officials, including President Mugabe, with travel bans over
these violations. They have refused to recognise Mugabe's re-election last
year in a poll seen as unfree and unfair.
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Daily News

      HIT students face uncertain future

      3/27/2003 6:39:02 AM (GMT +2)

      Staff Reporter

      STUDENTS at the Harare Institute of Technology (HIT) face an uncertain
future after the government ordered them to find other colleges next term to
complete their studies.

      The move comes in the wake of government plans to upgrade the
institute to a degree-awarding institution. Isaac Gumiro, the college's
acting principal, said in a letter to students dated 14 March: "In the
secretary's minutes dated 13 March 2003, each student is required as a
matter of urgency to indicate the college of their choice to complete their

      "This should be communicated through the Principal of Harare Institute
of Technology between 15 and 21 March 2003 at the latest," read part of the
circular. Gumiro said all training programmes would be terminated at the
college to facilitate its transition into a university.

      Faith Chasokera, the ministry's media officer, yesterday said about
300, mostly third year students, would be inconvenienced by the relocation.
She said the government was not under any obligation to find alternative
colleges for the students despite the inconveniences caused.

      "The college will be offering bachelor and masters of technology
degrees in industrial engineering, industrial sciences and industrial
technology. The ministry has already identified the college director as
Engineer Kanhukamwe," she said.

      Chasokera said Kanhukamwe was appointed to run the institution with
effect from 1 March. "But those who will be writing their final examinations
in April would not be affected by the relocation to other colleges," she

      Chasokera said a group of students were going to meet Washington
Mbizvo, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary
Education to voice their concerns on the issue. The Zimbabwe National
Students' Union (Zinasu) said it would fight the move and force the ministry
to rescind its decision.

      Nkululeko Nyoni, the union's secretary-general, said the college
should not have recruited students for new programmes if it was aware of the
plans to change the focus of the institution. "The government left the
college to enroll students in May last year for three-year courses when it
knew that it would not take long before the college was changed into a
university," Nyoni said.

      "Now it is ordering the same administration at the college to disrupt
on-going training programmes." He said Zinasu would not stand idly while the
HIT administration nurtured another crisis.
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Daily News

      Long-distance travellers forced into joining demo

      3/27/2003 6:42:14 AM (GMT +2)

      Staff Reporter

      LONG-DISTANCE travellers were on Monday caught up in the fray when the
shadowy pro-Zanu PF vigilante unit called "Chipangano" force-marched them to
demonstrate against Elias Mudzuri, the Harare Executive Mayor, at Town

      In separate interviews, disgruntled travellers on Tuesday said the
Zanu PF leadership in Mbare forcibly convened a meeting on Sunday and
instructed them to march on Town House to oust Mudzuri. A Murehwa woman who
refused to be named said the youths came to Mbare Musika where she was
waiting to board a bus to her rural home.

      "I was in the company of my son with our bags," she said. "The youths
drove everyone at the terminus to the Mbare Musika farmers' section where we
were ordered to board the lorries which were offloading potatoes and

      She said: "We were ordered to leave our bags at the terminus. They
said Mudzuri had to be removed by any means possible. By the time we
returned, our bags had been stolen. These Zanu PF youths are mere thugs,
posing as political activists." Tapiwa Chikande of Mbare yesterday said the
Sunday meeting was held amid constant intimidation, harassment and death

      Chikande said they were force-marched to the meeting where they were
told to participate in the anti-Mudzuri demonstration. Mudzuri was elected
to council on an MDC ticket. Chikande said: "On Monday, the Zanu PF youth
chairman, Chrispen Machavira, and the main wing chairman, a Mr Kaseke, went
around the area in the company of several other Chipangano youths and
forcibly closed shops and flea markets. We were gathered at the farmer's
section from where we were driven to Mudzuri's offices. We were unwilling to
demonstrate but had no choice."

      He said all transporters were barred from leaving Mbare Musika for any
other destination besides Town House. "The grievances against Mudzuri are
not in any way linked to him," he said. "The toilets, hostels, the markets
and the roads were established long before his election as mayor.

      The Chipangano group is a bunch of terrorists." The mayor has accused
Zanu PF and government of planning the demonstration while burying national
hero Dr Swithun Mombeshora, the late Minister of Higher and Tertiary
Education, last Friday.

      Nathan Shamuyarira, the Zanu PF secretary for information and
publicity, has denied any knowledge of the plans and the demonstration.
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Daily News

      Producers warn of milk supply slump

      3/27/2003 6:42:52 AM (GMT +2)

      By Chris Mhike Business Reporter

      MILK supplies could decline by at least 50 percent this year, if the
grave problems haunting the dairy industry are not addressed, the National
Association of Dairy Farmers (NADF) has said.

      Over the past three years the raw milk production base has endured
major challenges on many fronts. Farm invasions, macro-economic turbulence
and government policy complexities such as price controls, have all weighed
in on the production, processing and distribution of milk.

      Stockfeed price increases, shortages and consumer price controls had
also contributed to the drop in production and supply levels of milk. Stoff
Hawgood, the NADF chairman, said the net effect of the challenges was a 32
percent slump in milk supply levels between last year and this year.

      He was speaking at the Dairy Farmer of the Year awards ceremony.
Addressing the same gathering, Antony Mandiwanza, the Dairibord chief
executive, said the national dairy herd delivering milk to the formal sector
had dropped by a "shocking" 54 178 cows. The drop represented a 51 percent
decline since 1995.

      The decimation of the dairy herd, said Mandiwanza, was compounded by
the decline in the population of commercial dairy producers. While 437
producers were registered with the Commercial Farmers' Union in 1995, only
285 remained by the end of last year.

      Mandiwanza urged the government to adopt corrective measures such as
viable pricing of milk products and the protection of the few strategic
producers and the national dairy herd.
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Daily News

      C'wealth officials meet Obasanjo over SA U-turn

      3/27/2003 6:46:04 AM (GMT +2)

      By Brian Mangwende Chief Reporter

      TWO members of the Commonwealth secretariat were in Nigeria this week
reportedly to discuss with President Olusegun Obasanjo, among other issues,
the abrupt U-turn by South Africa on Zimbabwe's further suspension from the

      Don McKinnon, the Commonwealth Secretary-General, and Joel Kibazo, the
director of information, flew to Nigeria following claims by South Africa
that it was not part of the Troika's decision to extend Zimbabwe's
suspension for another nine months.

      Yesterday, Kibazo confirmed they met Obasanjo to discuss the
Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) set for December.Nigeria is
hosting the CHOGM.Speaking from London, Kibazo said: "How can South Africa
say they were not aware of the decision? After the Troika failed to agree on
a collective position on Zimbabwe, McKinnon was mandated to consult the rest
of the group.
      "Some suggested stiffer measures against Zimbabwe while others,
including South Africa, wanted the suspension lifted. The majority were for
the status quo to remain until a decision is made in December in Abuja. This
was communicated to Presidents Obasanjo and Thabo Mbeki of South Africa a
day before the statement was released."

      In an interview with The Daily News on Monday, Bheki Khumalo,
President Mbeki's spokesman said: "Our position has never changed. We never
said Zimbabwe's suspension should be extended. As the Troika meeting, we
were mandated to deal with the Zimbabwean crisis for a year and that time
lapsed on 19 March." Asked whether he discussed the Zimbabwean crisis with
Obasanjo, Kibazo said: "I'll not comment at this stage on the details but we
did and the discussion was fruitful." Last week, McKinnon issued a statement
saying the Troika, comprising Australia, Nigeria and South Africa, extended
Zimbabwe's suspension until December.

      McKinnon said the decision was arrived at in consultation with other
members of the Commonwealth. Following an earlier stand-off among the Troika
on Zimbabwe and subsequent meetings, McKinnon said: "The members of the
Troika have now concluded that the most appropriate approach in the
circumstances is for Zimbabwe's suspension from the councils of the
Commonwealth to remain in place until Commonwealth heads of government
decide upon a way forward at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in
December 2003."
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Daily News

      Air Zimbabwe loses billions in French deal

      3/27/2003 6:46:44 AM (GMT +2)

      By Precious Shumba

      Cash-strapped Air Zimbabwe has been prejudiced of billions of dollars
in scarce foreign currency as it forges ahead with its plans to acquire two
50-seater aircraft from Air Littoral Industrie SA of France. The money has
been lost through the payment of bonus fees to intermediaries, travel
allowances and kick-backs to management.

      Sources familiar with the contract strongly feel that the airline's
management has to be investigated for illegal foreign currency dealings as a
matter of urgency or the airline could collapse. Documents made available to
this reporter show that Air Zimbabwe entered into an agreement with two
organisations to act on its behalf in order to hire two ATR 42-500 MSN 484
aircraft. The aircraft will service central and southern African routes.

      The lease agreement is subordinate to, and consistent with the terms
of a sub-lease agreement between Maela Finance BV of Canada and Air Littoral
as sub-lessee as per agreement struck on 28 June 1996.
      Aviation experts described the agreement as a "contract within a
contract". Air Zimbabwe will pay Air Littoral US$147 000 (Z$8 million) for
each of the planes every month for the next three years.

      Efforts to get a copy of the memorandum of understanding between the
airline and the French company on Monday failed. But sources said the
management had committed the airline for the next three years and millions
in scarce foreign currency will be paid to the French in travel allowances,
monthly rentals and maintenance work. Rambai Chingwena, the airline's
managing director, refused to discuss the
      deal saying it was premature for him to disclose it.

      He said: "It (comment) will come at the appropriate time. It's at a
stage not for public disclosure." An e-mail to Chingwena by Lionel Sineux,
the head of fleet management at Air Littoral Industries dated 12 March,
shows that Air Zimbabwe has already paid US$357 881,09 (Z$286 304 872) as
part of US$450 000 (Z$360 million) security deposit before the plane is

      A source said: "This ATR business has been Chingwena's preserve. He
has flown outside Zimbabwe on several occasions and claims large amounts in
foreign currency. "The airline has lost substantial amounts through this
secretive deal. The money that Cornwell Muleya, an aviation consultant and
the former acting general manager for Air Botswana was paid, should have
been used to rehabilitate the British Aerospace 146 which has been lying
idle in the hangar since 1999.

      "The money should have been paid directly to Air Littoral Industrie
without engaging private individuals and consultants. "The delegation that
travelled to France should have done that in the first place than wait to
lose millions in foreign currency. Air Zimbabwe paid for Muleya's travels at
US$350 each day he travelled on Air Littoral business."

      Another US$170 000 (Z$136 million) was paid as commitment fee . An
additional US$102 086 was paid but Sineux was unsure what that amount was
for, saying he only knew that that transaction was initiated by the
Commercial Bank of Frankfurt (CBF). The contract was signed despite
resistance from government and advice from Air Botswana which once dealt
with Air Littoral. Air Zimbabwe first entered into an agreement to engage
Muleya as their consultant, to source the planes .Muleya wrote to Dennis
Maravanyika, Air Zimbabwe's former senior marketing manager, on 17 October
2002 expressing his satisfaction with the contract.

      Muleya was said to have been paid US$25 000 (Z$20 million) as success
fee for each of the ATR planes and will receive an additional US$10 000 (Z$8
million) as bonus fee for each of the planes once the aircraft are delivered
to Harare.

      This money is meant to thank Muleya for not exceeding the target
rental of US$100 000 which Air Zimbabwe was prepared to pay for the
aircraft. The aircraft were sourced at a rental of US$90 000 each.
      Sources said since the memorandum of understanding between Air
Zimbabwe and Air Littoral was signed about four months ago, Chingwena has
undertaken several business trips to London, France and Canada, pursuing the
deal and claiming millions of dollars in foreign currency.

      For example, Chingwena last Wednesday travelled from Harare on the
pretext that he was going to Montpellier in France to seal the deal with Air
Littoral but instead stayed in London because his visa to France was

      He later proceeded to Canada on unspecified business. He will return
on 6 April. According to sources who travelled to France last week,
Chingwena received US$10 800 (Z$8 6 40 000) at the rate of US$600 daily

      Five senior managers who travelled to Montpellier returned to Harare
last Sunday. Each was paid a daily allowance of US$350 for the one week they
stayed in France although Air Littoral paid for their
      accommodation and flight expenses.

      Meanwhile, when Muleya's relationship with Air Zimbabwe reportedly
soured, Air Zimbabwe approached Beaumont and Son of the United Kingdom to
assist them complete the Air Littoral deal. Patsy Barnes of Beaumont and
Son, according to documents at hand, faxed Air Zimbabwe on 18 March,
acknowledging receipt of the airline's accounts and a copy of the memorandum
of agreement.

      Chingwena immediately faxed Cathy Oatridge at their London office
concerning the legal fees. He said: "Please can payment be made immediately
to Beaumont and Son in terms of the attached." He directed that the money be
deposited in the Beaumont and Son Sterling client account 0996602 sort code
18 00 02T on the same day.

      On 19 March, James
      Edmunds, a partner in Beaumont and Son, wrote to Air Zimbabwe
confirming Chingwena's flight schedule and said he was looking forward to
meeting him in France. Air Zimbabwe workers said the swift manner in which
Chingwena responded to the request to deposit the $44 million in foreign
currency into the Beaumont and Son account, had shocked them.

      The same management has refused to release foreign currency to carry
out modifications on three Boeing 737 planes. The Civil Aviation Authority
of Zimbabwe has reportedly threatened to ground the planes by 31 March
unless the modifications were carried out.
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Daily News

      MDC stands by ultimatum

      3/27/2003 6:47:45 AM (GMT +2)

      By Obert Matahwa

      MORGAN Tsvangirai, the MDC president, has said the opposition party
will not back down on its ultimatum to the government in which, among other
things, it demanded the release of political prisoners.

      Speaking at a Press conference in Harare yesterday, Tsvangirai said
the 31 March deadline was fast approaching and the MDC would continue its
consultation process until its demands were met.

      "So far Mugabe has ignored the people's 15 demands released through
the MDC on 19 March," he said. "We are not retreating from those demands and
the ultimatum still stands. Mind you, the deadline is fast approaching. It
is only 6 days to go." Tsvangirai accused President Mugabe of continuously
brutalising innocent people for demanding a legitimate and democratic
government ever since he "stole" victory in last year's presidential
election. He said Mugabe had made it an offence under the draconian Public
Order and Security Act to demand an accountable government.

      Tsvangirai said the overwhelming response to the MDC's call for the
mass action last week showed that the opposition party was a legitimate
authority in the country at the moment. "The current situation has reached
unacceptable levels with more than a thousand innocent people being hounded
from their homes, arrested and detained as political prisoners when their
only crime is to demand their right to a legitimate and democratic
government," he said.

      He said the only programme Mugabe's government had consistently
implemented since the stolen elections has been to wage a relentless war
against the people of Zimbabwe. "Hospitals and police stations are teeming
with men, women and children, with serious injuries arising from the wave of
retribution directed at the opposition countrywide," he said. "As a result,
families are being destroyed in a calculated plan to burn down Zimbabwe in
Mugabe's quest to hold onto power at any cost.

      "We remain the largest political party in Zimbabwe that represents the
sovereign wishes of the people of Zimbabwe and new members continue to swell
our ranks every day, mainly from Zanu PF," he said.
      The MDC leader said since Mugabe robbed him of poll victory last year,
the crisis of governance had continued to deepen. Tsvangirai said it was sad
that Mugabe was now taking advantage of funerals to unveil threats and
launch pot shots at the MDC.
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Daily News

Leader Page

      A high price to pay for political recklessness

      3/27/2003 7:01:49 AM (GMT +2)

      LAST Monday's phony demonstration against the Executive Mayor of
Harare was another instructive lesson for those who believe the rule of law
is alive and well in Zimbabwe.

      Hardly a week earlier, there had been violence on a large scale in
Highfield and Kuwadzana as the MDC tried to hold rallies to prepare for the
two by-elections due this week in the constituencies. There were beatings
and at least two Members of Parliament said they had to run for their lives
as gunshots were fired at their vehicle. One of them said they escaped death
"by the grace of God".

      Accusations of police partisanship in the disturbances in Highfield
and Kuwadzana flew hither and thither - not for the first time either. The
police have been accused of turning themselves into an active appendage of
Zanu PF. The Police Commissioner, Augustine Chihuri, made a famous statement
of his partisanship a long time ago.

      He was neither officially rebuked by the government, nor did the
Ministry of Home Affairs order an inquiry into his inflammatory utterances -
which they ought to have done, as the Police Commissioner is not paid out of
taxpayers' hard-earned cash to protect and promote the interests of one
political party.

      The demonstration against Elias Mudzuri outside Town House was, by
contrast, incident-free. Yet, according to all the available evidence, the
demonstration was neither spontaneous nor focused on any specific issue,
except a vague and general discontent with the council, in office for a

      Reports that most of the demonstrators were virtually coerced to take
part in the protest ought to be investigated, if not by the police, then
certainly by an independent organisation, such as the Zimbabwe Human Rights
Association (ZimRights).

      And what is this amorphous organisation called "Chipangano", allegedly
originating in or affiliated to the Zanu PF branch in Mbare? It seems
obvious that the alleged protest against the mayor was stage-managed from
beginning to end by Zanu PF.

      So far, the police have not announced an investigation into
allegations that innocent Mbare residents were forced to join the protest,
or that the leaders of the "Chipangano" commandeered commuter omnibuses and
other transport to ferry the reluctant protesters to Town House.

      If detractors of the police force now conclude that there are
similarities between them and Adolf Hitler's brutal Gestapo, their argument
will be bolstered by President Mugabe's seemingly glowing references to the
Nazi dictator at Heroes' Acre at the burial of Swithun Mombeshora.

      People who have spoken well of the Nazi dictator since he committed
suicide in his Berlin bunker in 1945 have themselves been identified as
power-hungry, bloodthirsty autocrats, despots, megalomaniacs plagued with
xenophobia and people with little regard for the sanctity of human life.

      If Mugabe is openly siding with Adolf Hitler, then all his followers
would be well-advised to launch a concerted effort to counsel him against
this dangerous adulation. A few years ago, he spoke disparagingly of the
Jewish people and earned himself the tag of an anti-Semitic fanatic.

      Apart from this, there is the real danger of Mugabe challenging the
people to confront his police force and his own declared intention to
 "crush" the opposition. This is not the first time he has spoken so
dangerously of using unconventional methods to neutralise the opposition.

      There are people who have always doubted Mugabe's commitment to
democracy, but if his overall plan is to physically confront the opposition,
then he is raising the political stakes to a perilous level.
      The nation may have to pay dearly for this political recklessness.
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Sunday Times (SA)

Harare blasted on arrests: Mbeki

SA has taken issue with the Zimbabwean government's treatment of opposition
protesters during last week's stayaway, telling Harare that it does not
agree with actions that deprive people of the right to peaceful protest.

In reply to a parliamentary question from Democratic Alliance leader Tony
Leon, President Thabo Mbeki said yesterday that Foreign Minister Nkosazana
Dlamini-Zuma had been in contact with her counterpart in Zimbabwe following
reports of police excesses during the stayaway.

Mbeki and his government have regularly been criticised for failing to take
action when there have been reports of human rights violations in Zimbabwe.

His statement yesterday is the clearest indication yet that government has
engaged its Zimbabwe counterparts on issues of this nature in the past.

But despite taking the matter up with Harare, the crackdown has continued,
with Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe ordering security forces to take
strong action against the opposition.

Mbeki said Dlamini-Zuma had "given instructions to our high commissioner in
Zimbabwe to look into all these matters. We are dealing with that question
with the Zimbabwe government and indeed have said to them that we do not
agree with actions which deny the right of Zimbabweans to protest

"We are therefore dealing with this particular matter directly with the
Zimbabwe government and will continue to do so. We will see what the outcome

Leon asked Mbeki to comment on the progress towards democratisation in
Zimbabwe, pointing out that over the past weekend, "250 members of the
opposition were hospitalised, 400 arrested, 260 in detention without being
charged because of a work stoppage which in any other democratic country
would be perfectly legal".
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The Star

      Mbeki calls for support of talks in Zimbabwe
      March 27, 2003

      By Jeremy Michaels and John Battersby

      Zimbabwean opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai has given the green
light for reopening stalled talks with President Robert Mugabe's government.

      Tsvangirai confirmed the change of heart after President Thabo Mbeki
yesterday welcomed the MDC leader's decision to return to talks.

      In the most upbeat remarks he has made on Zimbabwe in many months,
Mbeki said every effort had to be made to encourage the MDC and Mugabe's
Zanu-PF to find a negotiated settlement to the country's problems.

      "The leader of the MDC is now saying 'please let us go back to these
negotiations' - I agree with that and we'll try to do our best to help them
achieve that objective," Mbeki told parliament yesterday.

      Responding to Mbeki's assessment of his comments in the media,
Tsvangirai said: "It is a correct interpretation.

      "Dialogue is the only solution, but it has to be principled. That it
is the only way to resolve the country's problems without Zimbabwe
degenerating into chaos and anarchy."

      He emphasised that he was not suggesting that the MDC would withdraw
its court challenge to the controversial outcome of last year's presidential
election, which Mugabe won by a slim but disputed margin.

      "I'm not saying that we are withdrawing our court case, but the talks
should resume - there is already an agreed agenda for those talks.

      "We are not going to suspend our court action, just like we are not
stopping the government from prosecuting us for so-called treason."

      He was referring to the ongoing court case in which he is a co-accused
in a treason trial stemming from an alleged plot to assassinate Mugabe.

      Asked if he was saying the talks should resume regardless of the court
cases, Tsvangirai responded with a resounding "yes".

      Asked whether he saw the possibility of a trade-off on the court cases
in a bid to get the stalled talks back on track, he said: "If there is any
trade-off, that should be part of discussions, so yes, we want ... an
open-ended discussion."

      Mbeki urged the Zimbabweans to go back to negotiations, pointing out
that the talks initiated by himself and Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo
had stalled because of the MDC court challenge.

      Responding to questions from MPs, Mbeki said he would be "quite happy"
for South Africa to host the talks.

      "The problem is to get them to sit down to sort out their problems,"
he added.

      Mbeki echoed comments earlier in the day by Foreign Affairs Minister
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma objecting to a violent state crackdown against
opposition supporters after a two-day strike last week.

      Pretoria could never "agree with actions that deny the right of
Zimbabweans to protest peacefully, democratically".

      "We'll deal with it in a manner that seeks actually to produce
results. We're not going to deal with it in a manner that makes good
headlines and does not produce results," he said.

      Mbeki also emphasised that he had openly criticised the violent nature
of the land redistribution programme and insisted on a return to the rule of
law in Zimbabwe.

      But he berated those in the opposition benches who were calling for
"smart" sanctions against Mugabe, citing the need to co-operate on practical
matters such as the recent outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in Zimbabwe,
which led the European Union to consider a ban an beef imports from the
entire Southern African region.

      "It's okay to say that if you are in Canberra or London ... but here,
across the border from Zim, there is no possibility whatsoever, that the
South African government will impose smart sanctions."

      Earlier, the government cautiously welcomed the mediation by Anglican
Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane in Zimbabwe, but warned that present
circumstances were not conducive to an early breakthrough.

      "Anything that will bring about reconciliation and establish a proper
political dialogue between the parties is to be welcomed," Dlamini-Zuma

      Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Aziz Pahad said Ndungane's initiative
had not "come out of the blue".

      Presidential spokesperson Bheki Khumalo said Mbeki and the archbishop
would meet next week to discuss the mediation effort.

      The meeting would also give the archbishop an opportunity to report
back on his recent talks with both Zanu-PF and the MDC, as well as with
trade unionists, non-governmental organisations, and other members of
religious and civil society, Khumalo said.

      Mugabe gave the archbishop the green light to proceed with his
mediation effort. But he also said the question of a political dialogue
between Zanu-PF and the MDC should be handled within the framework of the
initiative led by Mbeki and Obasanjo.

      Dlamini-Zuma confirmed after a parliamentary discussion on her budget
that she would soon travel to Harare as part of a Southern African
Development Community delegation of ministers led by Angola, which currently
chairs Sadc. - Political Bureau
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