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

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CNN

U.S. to slap sanctions on Mugabe

Friday, September 16, 2005; Posted: 5:52 p.m. EDT (21:52 GMT)

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) -- The United States plans to slap tough travel
sanctions on Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, members of his government
and their extended families, a senior U.S. official said Friday.
The move is aimed at further isolating Mugabe and is a sign of growing U.S.
impatience with Zimbabwe, whose relations with the West are at an all-time
low because of human rights abuses.

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer said
the U.S. Treasury was putting the final touches to an order that would bar
Mugabe, his senior officials and their families from visiting the United
States.

Travel visas for study purposes would also be affected.

"We are continuing to try to call attention to the human rights abuses, that
the last election was not fair and that there was not a level playing field
there," Frazer, a former U.S. ambassador to South Africa, said on the
sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in New York.

Mugabe has been at the gathering, where he spoke earlier this week.

Last month, Washington froze the U.S. assets of 26 Zimbabwean farms and
businesses it said were controlled by key members of Mugabe's government,
accusing them of undercutting democracy.

While taking punitive action that targeted Mugabe and his Cabinet, U.S.
officials said Washington would continue to provide food aid and other
humanitarian assistance to Zimbabwe, which is suffering its worst economic
crisis since independence from Britain 25 years ago.

The latest crisis was triggered by government seizures of white-owned farms
for resettlement of landless blacks and allegations of vote rigging in the
last election.

"Despite what may be taking place within the political context of that
government, President Bush is not going to allow people to starve or to face
those kinds of abuses," said Cindy Courville, special assistant to President
Bush on African affairs.

Last month, the United States sent 73,500 tons of food aid to southern
Africa with much of that expected to go to Zimbabwe, where about half of the
rural population is estimated to need emergency help.

On Saturday, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will be meeting South
African President Thabo Mbeki. Frazer said Zimbabwe would be a topic during
their talks.

Mbeki has in the past been accused of being too supportive of Mugabe and not
taking strong enough action against South Africa's neighbor.
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The Times

September 17, 2005

Just a single fire engine keeps going in the city without fuel
From Jan Raath in Harare

HARARE is a city grinding to a halt for lack of fuel. The
Zimbabwean capital has just enough petrol to keep one fire engine running.
Prison officers have been unable to drive prisoners to court
this week, there have been no refuse collections for a month, ambulances can
be seen queueing outside dry petrol stations and thousands of taxis and
buses lie idle because they have nothing to run on.

Yesterday, Morgan Tsvangirai, the leader of the opposition
Movement for Democratic Change, walked the four miles from his home to his
Harare office in a gesture of solidarity with the tens of thousands of
Zimbabweans for whom there is no longer any public transport. He said: "This
is an intolerable situation. We cannot continue to endure this . . . The
Government must realise it has turned Zimbabwe into what it is today."

Zimbabwe's deepening fuel crisis is not immediately obvious. At
peak hours there is still enough traffic on the roads to cause congestion.
But those vehicles are mostly running on black market petrol that sells for
about 200,000 Zimbabwe dollars (5) per litre - eight times the official
price.

At that price Zimbabweans buy no more than they have to. In half
a mile yesterday I came across three vehicles stranded by the roadside after
running out of petrol.

The true scale of the crisis was revealed this week by Nomutsa
Chideya, clerk of the city council, who said that the situation was so bad
that all the fire brigade had left was a quarter tank of fuel in one fire
engine. "If there is an emergency, we won't be able to attend," he said. "We
have to pray there will not be a crisis.

"We have not received diesel for the past four weeks. We are not
able to attend to any sewerage or water pipe bursts because all our vehicles
are grounded."

Council sources confirmed that there had been no refuse
collection for more than a month. Mr Chideya said that the city council had
been forced to buy 10,000 litres of diesel on the black market. "We will
face the consequences later. At the moment we will have to deal with the
situation."

The fuel shortage is crippling Zimbabwe's industry, too. Last
week, Patison Sithole, the chief executive of the country's only sugar
refinery, said that it had halted exports. It has stopped receiving
deliveries of coal needed for the refining process because the National
Railways of Zimbabwe does not have the diesel to move the coal.

Farmers' unions said that the country was facing the worst
agricultural season since independence in 1980. Already devastated by
President Mugabe's mass land grab, the farming industry is facing
unprecedented disaster because what little fertiliser, seed and crop
chemicals are available cannot be delivered for lack of fuel.

Air travel is frequently disrupted. A German diplomat recently
had to scrounge lifts on each leg of a three-stop trip with Air Zimbabwe
because there was no jet fuel.

Zimbabwe's fuel crisis is now entering its sixth year.
Economists say that it has never been so bad and can only worsen as the
economy deteriorates and hard currency earnings needed to import fuel grow
scarcer.

Mr Mugabe's Government appears to be juggling its dwindling
resources ever more desperately. Last week Gideon Gono, the Reserve Bank
governor, said that funds earmarked for fuel imports had been temporarily
diverted to make a partial repayment on the country's debt to the
International Monetary Fund. The IMF was threatening to expel Zimbabwe.

Mike Davies, the chairman of the Combined Harare Residents'
Association, said that Harare's ambulances may have run dry, "but you can
bet that the tanks of Sekesayi Makwavarara are full".

Mrs Makwavarara, a Mugabe loyalist who heads the commission that
runs Harare, is awaiting a US$27,000 (15,000) allocation from the central
bank for an official visit to Moscow. That sum would pay for 35,000 litres
of fuel, more than the Harare council's monthly needs, said Mr Davies.

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The Telegraph

Mugabe spurned loan 'in fury over conditions'
By David Blair in Johannesburg
(Filed: 17/09/2005)

President Robert Mugabe rejected South Africa's offer of emergency cash to
bail out Zimbabwe's collapsing economy and "humiliated" his officials when
they presented him with a draft rescue package, it emerged yesterday.

Mr Mugabe was "apoplectic" when he learned of the stringent conditions
attached to a loan from South Africa.

The conditions are believed to have included Mr Mugabe being required to
open talks with the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, repeal a
series of repressive laws and implement ambitious economic reforms.

A senior western diplomat said that Mr Mugabe's rejection of this offer had
"exasperated" President Thabo Mbeki's government. But he added that South
Africa would continue to refrain from public criticism of Mr Mugabe.

The loan would have covered Zimbabwe's debts of 160 million with the
International Monetary Fund.

About one third of the country's economy has been wiped out in the past five
years and inflation runs at 265 per cent.

When Zimbabwe opened talks with South Africa, it faced expulsion from the
IMF, a measure that has not been taken against any country for five decades.

But the western diplomat said that Mr Mugabe had "furiously" cast aside the
outcome of weeks of negotiations carried out by Gideon Gono, the governor of
Zimbabwe's Reserve Bank, Herbert Murerwa, the finance minister, and their
South African counterparts.

The president deliberately "humiliated" Mr Gono and Mr Murerwa by making
them read out the conditions before adamantly rejecting them, the diplomat
said.

Mr Mugabe's aides were left to try to find a way of preventing Zimbabwe's
expulsion from the International Monetary Fund.

Sources in Harare said that the Reserve Bank raided the foreign currency
accounts of exporters, seizing american dollars and paying for them in the
worthless local currency. One mining company is reported to have lost 5
million.

These draconian measures, together with other devices, succeeded in raising
65 million. This was handed over to the IMF on Aug 31, in time for the
organisation's executive board meeting last Friday.

That gathering decided to defer Zimbabwe's expulsion for another six months.
The country still owes the IMF 95 million.
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The Guardian

Mugabe: Zimbabwe to Take Stake in Mines

Saturday September 17, 2005 12:31 AM

By MICHELLE FAUL

Associated Press Writer

UNITED NATIONS (AP) - Zimbabwe's embattled and isolated leader said Friday
that his government will take a stake in privately operated mining
enterprises in the mineral-rich southern African nation, but he does not
intend to nationalize the industry as he has commercial farmland.

In a wide-ranging, exclusive interview with The Associated Press, Robert
Mugabe claimed his people - including hundreds of thousands made homeless by
a recent controversial slum clearance and others facing famine because of
disastrous land reform - are ``very, very happy.''

Mugabe, 81, who has ruled since a guerrilla war brought independence 25
years ago, said he plans to retire when his term expires in 2008 and live
between the countryside and the city, farming and writing.

He spoke in a 75-minute interview at the U.N. World Summit, which he said he
was pleased to have attended even though it produced ``very little by way of
expectations'' toward promised goals to fight poverty and eliminate trade
tariffs.

For that he blamed the United States, saying it should not be allowed to
derail the agenda of dozens of other nations ``just because they are the
strongest and wealthiest. The United Nations isn't owned by them.''

He said Africa's 52 votes at the U.N. - more than a quarter of all votes -
and the Non-Aligned Movement's more than 100 member votes should be
mobilized to ensure that the ``very important, sacrosanct goals'' are not
dismissed.

Mugabe also railed against the U.S.-led war in Iraq: ``Iraq was attacked and
attacked in violation of international law. ... They went on this rampage,
on this campaign, which has destabilized Iraq, on the basis of lies,'' he
said.

With globalization and the fall of the Soviet Union, ``the world is fast
becoming a world in which small states are threatened by the bigger ones, by
the bullies.''

Mugabe himself has been the subject of international condemnation. His
government is accused of stealing elections, most recently in April, and of
gross human rights abuses to suppress opposition.

On a national level, Mugabe said his government would take a share in
private mining enterprises because it wants its people to benefit from their
own natural resources. He said he expects companies currently mining in
Zimbabwe, including the multinational Anglo American, to understand that
desire.

``We just want to be partners. We are not doing anything unusual, and this
is the practice in many countries,'' he said.

Zimbabwe mines coal, chromium ore, asbestos, gold, nickel, copper, iron ore,
vanadium, lithium, tin and platinum group metals as well as diamonds,
emeralds and semiprecious stones.

``What we intend to do is for the state to have a stake in the production of
some of our minerals - gold, platinum, diamonds,'' he said. ``We are behind
countries like Botswana and Namibia.''

Mugabe also said he has signed several agreements for state-owned Chinese
companies to mine in Zimbabwe under joint ventures with his government.

He said he has no plans to nationalize the industry, as he had threatened to
do when he first was elected and dreamed of created a one-party Marxist
state.

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The Herald

Under-utilised farms should be seized: Mujuru

By Tandayi Motsi
VICE PRESIDENT Cde Joice Mujuru yesterday said all beneficiaries of land
reform found under-utilising their farms are saboteurs who should lose those
properties.

Addressing farmers at the Cotton Company of Zimbabwe (Cottco) National
Grower of the Year Awards ceremony, Cde Mujuru, a successful farmer herself,
said it was distressing and unacceptable that some farmers had become
perennial beggars and not worthy and recognised producers in their own
right.

"If you are not farming properly, this is sabotage at its highest level,"
she said. "What pains us is that the farmers are not producing at the farms
yet they are the first to beg for assistance from the Government."

The Government, Cde Mujuru said, had concluded the land question through the
promulgation of the Constitution of Zimbabwe (No 17) Amendment Act and it
was now up to the farmers to reciprocate that enabling move by utilising the
land.

The Act bars courts from hearing appeals challenging the acquisition of
commercial farms that would have been identified and repossessed by the
State for resettlement.

Vice President Mujuru said new farmers not committed to farming as a
business should go back to communal areas and pave way for those who had
serious intentions to work the land productively.

"Musana unenge unemabhaudhi usingagone kurima. Chirisiyirawoka vamwe nokuti
isu hatidi kuverenga mbeva nanamudune. Aiwa, tinoda kuverenga mbeva chaidzo
vanamudune tokandira vanakitsi (If you are not up to the task and demands of
farming, leave it to those with the dedication and skills. We want farmers
who work the land for maximum production, not incompetents and idlers who
just sit and do nothing)," she said.

Cde Mujuru then questioned the figure produced by Zimbabwe Farmers' Union
(ZFU) president Mr Silas Hungwe that the organisation had a countrywide
membership of one million.

Expressing her doubts over the figure, the Vice President said if there were
indeed a million small-scale and communal farmers under the ZFU, Zimbabwe
would not be facing the current food shortages because such a large number
was capable of feeding the entire nation.

She further emphasised that farmers should not wait for or look up to the
Government alone for assistance but should also work out ways and means to
help themselves.

"We have lost our respect through begging and we must produce our own food.
The poverty in Zimbabwe is man-made."

She urged the financial sector to recognise the new reality on the ground by
extending funding and input schemes to the newly-resettled farmers.

Turning to the cotton industry, Cde Mujuru said the Cottco inputs credit
scheme was perhaps the most visible element of business partnership. She
applauded the company for investing in the industry.

The challenge to Cottco, she said, was to disseminate information and
distribute new varieties to farmers so that Zimbabwe keeps abreast with the
world.

Cde Mujuru encouraged Cottco and others in the industry to continue
investing in research and development for the country to achieve the maximum
returns on cotton seed production for its growers.

She challenged the company and the industry as a whole to boost production,
saying Cottco should surpass its target of 400 000 tonnes of cotton a year
in the immediate term and 500 000 tonnes in the medium term so as to fully
use the available ginning capacity.

Government, Cde Mujuru said, had a vision and thrust to put in place
measures that stimulated investor confidence.

"We believe that high quality standards from planting to dispatch of lint to
overseas customers, is the only guarantee for a successful industry that
exports a high quality product. It is, therefore, in that context that we
will review your submissions," she said.

Speaking at the same occasion, Cottco managing director Mr Happymore Mapara
said the company would strive to increase financial assistance to farmers in
order for them to procure inputs.

Mr Mapara welcomed competition from other players in the industry, saying
this was healthy for the sector.

However, he said the competition had also come with threats as not all the
current 15 players in the industry were committed to the production of the
cotton.

Mr Mapara said Cottco was keen to value-add on its products and plans to
expand the existing ginning plant were at an advanced stage.

Gokwe Chireya Member of Parliament Cde Leonard Chikomba (Zanu-PF) scooped
the Large-Scale Cotton Grower of the Year Award while the Small-Scale Cotton
Grower of the Year Award went to Mr Risai Rutanhire of Muzarabani.

For their efforts, Cde Chikomba and Mr Rutanhire walked away with a floating
trophy each and an assortment of other prizes that included cotton
fertiliser and seed.

Speaking after being crowned, Cde Chikomba, who is both a businessman and a
farmer, paid tribute to Cottco for grooming him.

"The real wealth is in the land and I urge other new farmers to commit
themselves to serious farming," he said.
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Anchorage Daily News

RICHARD J. NORTON: Yes, it can get worse in Zimbabwe

The Providence Journal

Published: September 16, 2005
Last Modified: September 16, 2005 at 11:40 AM

(SH) - It is no secret that Zimbabwe - unless you happen to be President
Robert Mugabe - has long been a very bad place in which to live.

Mugabe, a former guerrilla leader in the struggle against Ian Smith's
white-supremacist (Rhodesian) government, came to power as prime minister in
1980. He has since been the country's sole ruler, becoming president in
1987.

When he took the reins of power, Zimbabwe was a showcase of progress. It was
a major food exporter, its telephone system was rated the best in Africa and
its rich mineral resources promised economic growth and sustained
development.

All that changed under Mugabe, who came to personify the adage of the
corrupting nature of power. In an effort to carry out land reform, Mugabe
broke up primarily white-owned farms and redistributed the acreage, mainly
to veterans of his guerrilla years. The result was an ever-increasing
torrent of white flight and farm failure.

Today, Zimbabwe is a food importer, grocery shelves are often bare and the
specter of famine is constant.

Mugabe has also dabbled in military adventurism. Scenting opportunity in the
politically destabilized Democratric Republic of the Congo, Mugabe's forces
entered into a war from 1998 to 2002. The fiscal cost of the operation was
staggering, draining hundreds of millions from the Zimbabwean treasury.

The story is the same in nearly every sector of Zimbabwean life. AIDS is
rampant, inflation (now at 255 percent a year) is skyrocketing and
unemployment may be as high as 70 percent. Mugabe's failure to meet
budgetary goals has resulted in suspension of International Monetary Fund
support, and the value of the Zimbabwean dollar has sunk to a record low.

Even the black-rhinoceros population, once at its greatest abundance in
Zimbabwe, has been reduced by 90 percent, because of the government's
inability to prevent poaching. Mineral extraction has not been accompanied
by environmental safeguards, causing an increase in heavy-metal pollution.

Mugabe's protests to the contrary, Zimbawe's woes are not solely due to the
country's colonial legacy. Zimbabwe's history did, indeed, present it with
significant challenges - most of which were shared by other African states -
but the death spiral of one of Africa's most promising states is largely of
his own making.

Remember: Mugabe has had more than a generation to show some progress.

Given the state of affairs in Zimbabwe, it is hard to imagine that things
could get worse. Yet to do so would underestimate Mugabe. Recent events have
shown that the limit of his capacity to inflict pain on his people has yet
to be reached.

Mugabe's latest depredation was titled "Operation Murambatsvina" -
"murambatsvina" being a Shona word for "drive out trash." Described as part
urban renewal and part anti-crime effort, Operation Murambatsvina was little
more than a two-month military campaign to demolish poor townships and evict
the families living there. The operation was carried out, often at gunpoint,
by Zimbabwean police, army personnel and members of the "Green Bombers" -
musclemen for Mugabe's ZANU-PF party.

Of course, Zimbabwe lacks any means of resettling these displaced people,
and they have been ordered to find new homes and employment in the country.
This is bound to increase the number of Zimbabwean refugees, who are already
a major source of concern to both neighboring South Africa and Botswana.

Apparently more than a desire to clean up the neighborhood motivated Mugabe
in Operation Murambatsvina. It seems that the razed neighborhoods were
hotbeds of political opposition to the ZANU-PF party; by knocking them down,
Mugabe not only dealt out some political retribution but also further
weakened his internal opponents. Operation Murambatsvina also eliminated
some black-market money dealers, confiscating their cash in the process. As
a result, more Zimbabweans may now be forced to do business with official
banks - increasing Mugabe's control over his plummeting currency.

The United Nations has reacted to Mugabe's "urban-renewal" efforts with
surprising bluntness. U.N. envoy Anna Tibaijuka has condemned Operation
Murambatsvina as a violation of international law and a state abuse of human
rights. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has also condemned Mugabe's
actions, and has called upon other African leaders to speak out against
them.

What should be done?

Part of the answer lies with the African Union - which is, as usual,
reluctant to act against Mugabe. Although beset with issues ranging from
dealing with coup leaders in Mauritania to peacekeeping efforts in Sudan,
the African Union should still lead the world community in responding to
Mugabe.

A spectrum of actions could be employed: freezing all external money
belonging to Mugabe and his wife, Grace, as well as other high-ranking
ZANU-PF officials; banning Zimbabwean cricket and soccer teams, symbols of
national pride, from international competition; increasing economic
sanctions against Zimbabwe; banning trade in Zimbabwean oil and minerals
until internal conditions improve. In short, Zimbabwe must become a pariah
state until Mugabe leaves office.

Rice will undoubtedly keep up the pressure on Mugabe, but the political
reality is that, lacking significant levers of influence over Mugabe, the
United States will be unlikely to effect change in Zimbabwe. That task
belongs to the African Union. African leaders whom Mugabe still listens to,
especially South African President Thabo Mbeki, need to tell the former
guerrilla fighter that it is time to go.

To date, Mbeki and other leaders in the region have been slow to take on
Mugabe. This is understandable. Mugabe's legacy as an anti-colonialist, the
similar challenges other African leaders have faced and a desire to advance
regional interests through cooperation have all contributed to their
silence.

Still, even his former friends should now see that Mugabe has gone too far.

Richard J. Norton is a professor of national-security affairs at the U.S.
Naval War College. The views here are his own and do not necessarily reflect
those of the college, the Navy or the Defense Department.

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VOA

Zimbabweans Plan Demonstration at UN Against Mugabe Rule By Francois
Nsengiyumva
Washington
16 September 2005

The North American Foundation for a Free Zimbabwe, a not-for-profit
organization in the United States, said it would demonstrate for two days at
the United Nations in New York starting Saturday to urge international
action against the Harare administration.

Foundation spokesman Handle Mlilo spoke with reporter Francois Nsengiyumva
of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe about what his group hoped to achieve.

While Zimbabwe's deteriorating political and economic crisis has hindered
its efforts to reach development goals, other factors have also come into
play, says one prominent Zimbabwean political analyst. Actionaid Regional
Policy and Advocacy Manager Brian Kagoro says these factors slowing
development have affected all Southern Africa.

Mr. Kagoro, who is based in Nairobi, Kenya, but until recently worked in
Harare as the head of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, said that while
countries around Zimbabwe are achieving decent growth rates, statistics mask
deeply entrenched poverty.

Mr. Kagoro shared his analysis with Studio 7 reporter and host Chris Gande.

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