US, Zim row escalates

via US, Zim row escalates – DailyNews Live by Xolisani Ncube 8 OCTOBER 2013 

Bruce Wharton, the US ambassador to Zimbabwe, has been summoned by government to explain why Simbarashe Mumbengegwi, Zimbabwe’s Foreign Affairs minister, was denied diplomatic privileges at an American airport two weeks ago.

Mumbengegwi stayed behind after attending the United Nations General Assembly in New York as he had other government business to attend to.

He had travelled as part of President Robert Mugabe’s entourage.

Mumbengegwi reportedly endured “humiliation” at the John F Kennedy International Airport after he was forced to go through airport security like all other ordinary passengers.

Despite applying for the VIP service from the US Department of State, which was okayed, Mumbengegwi did not enjoy the venerated status.

Junior officers manning the airport entrance stated that they had no instructions to extend any diplomatic privileges and niceties to the minister.

He was, as a result, treated as a common traveller, according to Foreign Affairs.

Diplomatic courtesy and common practice allows ministers to be escorted straight to their aircraft without going through security procedures for ordinary passengers.

But this was not the case for Mumbengegwi as he had to be “thoroughly” searched by junior officers before he rushed to catch his flight back home.

Joey Bimha, secretary for Foreign Affairs, confirmed to the Daily News that Wharton had been summoned by government to explain what caused the “degrading experience.”

“We have called him for explanations,” Bimha said.

Karen Kelley, US embassy spokesperson, said: “I can’t confirm nor deny that because I am not briefed on daily engagements of the ambassador and the ministry. The Zimbabwe government should help you.

“On the incidence at the airport, I am yet to get a full understanding of what happened, that is all I can say at the moment.”

Earlier during the UN General Assembly, Mugabe had blasted the US and its ally Britain as “covetous and bigoted big powers whose hunger for domination and control of other nations and their resources knows no bounds.”

Mugabe also faced a bumpy landing in New York when US officials wrote to the 89-year-old leader and his delegation advising them to confine themselves within a 25 km radius of the UN headquarters.

Harare, Washington relations have been sour over the past decade after America imposed travel bans and financial restrictions on Mugabe and a number of his allies over allegations of electoral fraud and human rights violations.

In his inauguration speech on August 22, the veteran Zanu PF leader said Zimbabwe was “an open, friendly country.”

“We seek friendship across geographies, across cultures, and quite often against past wrongs,” Mugabe said.

“We seek partnerships with all nations of goodwill, but partnerships based on sovereign, equality and mutual respect.”

He added: “As of those odd Western countries who happen to hold a different, negative view of our electoral process and outcome, well, there is not much we can do about them. We dismiss them as the vile ones whose moral turpitude we must mourn.

“They are entitled to their views, for as long as they recognise the majority of our people endorsed the electoral outcome, indeed for as long as they recognise that no Zimbabwean law was offended against.

“And for us that is all that matters. After all, Zimbabwean elections are meant for Zimbabwe’s voting citizens.

At the UN, Mugabe accused the United States and Britain of trying to control his nation and its resources.

In a speech to the United Nations General Assembly, Mugabe told the West to remove their “illegal and filthy sanctions”.

The United States and the European Union imposed sanctions on Zimbabwean State firms and travel restrictions on Mugabe and dozens of his associates after a violent 2000 election.

Mugabe and his Zanu PF government have rejected the allegations saying Washington was pushing a regime change agenda.



  • comment-avatar
    Naison Nyereyegona 9 years ago

    To illtreat the American visitor would make us look like the bully America. What we should do is show him our special hospitality. In any case, the Americans are still smarting from President Mugabe’s chiding at the UN. When you expose a thief, murderer and bully and lier -which is the hallmark of the United States of America- the culprit feels pain. Americans are looking for a fight with Zimbabwe and we should not give it to them. America has no shame. All they want are our resources and they will go to any length to try and get them, even by violent means. We should sting like a small bee, the way President Mugabe does and that gives imperialists everywhere sleepless nights. Let us be clever when dealing with a demonic country that produces arms by satanic quantities and has the might of the devil. America will soon fall on its own weight and we must not be in its shaddow when it does.

    • comment-avatar
      Mafuta 9 years ago

      Lot of hubris. “America” doesn’t give a rat’s rectum about Zimbabwe, and Zim has nothing that Am can’t get elsewhere.

    • comment-avatar
      Jrr56 9 years ago

      Thus over a little inadequate man who thinks he is important. The US has done far too many favours for the Mugabe criminals and should rather ban then from their fair shores.

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      munzwa 9 years ago

      Naison, dont we want to SELL our resources? If the president is asking for mutual respect between nations why not show some respect for his own people what ever way they voted?And no I dont believe the majority voted the way the results were announced!

  • comment-avatar
    zimbo 9 years ago

    “when you expose a thief,murderer,bully and liar.”Who we talking about here?

  • comment-avatar
    zimbo 9 years ago

    “when you expose a thief,murderer,bully and liar.”Who we talking about here,Naison?

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    Democracy wisher 9 years ago

    No respect must be granted to all Zanu-PF morons.If they want respect they must respect our rights as zimbabwean citizens nxaaa….

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    Zvichapera 9 years ago

    Big up to USA. Keep the screws tight on these morons. Sanctions should tightened even more.

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    Bunguse Tauyawo 9 years ago

    Are these comments from normal Zimbabweans, I wonder?? If they are we are definitely a sorry lot indeed!! Whatever happened to democracy which denmands that those defeated in elections should join the winners and move forward together? This denial of the fact that vaMugabe won the July 31 elections should give way to acceptance of a wonderful fact. Real Zimbabweans give respect where its due and expect the same treatment from others! Its not too much to ask!!

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    Isu-zvedu 9 years ago

    Suddenly the much talked about illnesses that made one president spend time being “treated” in Malaysia and Singapore almost every month, is gone. The man is fit as a fiddle, we are told. Stealing the country’s money and hiding it in offshore bank accounts under the “prostate cancer” illness ruse. Why are we Zimbabweans so gullible? Wind forward and observe the old man spewing poison at UN platform instead of mending relations for the good of the country. Now this….

  • comment-avatar

    Zanu supporters are sick in mind ,cant they see their bosses are enriching themselves at the expence of the Nation these guys who write insupport of zanu seem educated enough and knw zanu pf is a cruel Party bt they write for their supper unlike us true Zimbabweans we say it like it is,Devils to Hell with u

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    mujibha 9 years ago

    Naison, I don’t you r normal or you do have five senses. You r saying America is a bully, who is a better bully between your old idiot mugabe, who is a bully to his own people and good to the chinese, and Obama, who is good/ caring father to people, who will fight tooth and nail to protect his chicks from the eagles/ taliban of the world. Mugabe, is the worst thief in the world. I’m realy happy to see America, sending its drones to get read of this devil. The day I will hear/heard that mugabe is dead I will throw a massive part.

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    Chigango 9 years ago

    Reading Naison Nyereyegona’s post makes me collapse laughing – he must be on the CIO payroll or incredibly lacking in intelligence. Does he honestly think the US gives a damn about a poorly governed, totally corrupt,bankrupt,postage-stamp-sized dusty pothole called Zimbabwe (now a Chinese colony). Please, his posting is pathetic although totally in keeping with the blinkered mentality of Mugabe supporters. I travel to the US frequently and fully 95% of folk I speak to have never even heard of Zimbabwe – the other 5% think it is some “little tin-pot dictatorship somewhere in Africa” – they’re 100% right on that one.

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    Dickie 9 years ago

    Quite right Chigango…….I live in Canada and have done for the last 47 years and it is the same up here……..
    And while I would love to invest funds to help Zim recover economically there is no way in hell it is going to happen until Bob gives himself a HUGE shake and stops stealing investors assets.

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    adam jones 9 years ago

    Tauyawo muchibve pi? Mugabe stole the election and everyone including you Tauyawo knows it. Elections are for Zimbabweans – yes – but stollen election are agaist Zimbabweans. Not that zanu intend to return what they stole but that would be the honourable thing to do.