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

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Telegraph Newspaper in UK.

Subject: Zimbabwe: British Company Steals from White Farmers.

Peta Thornycroft in Chiredzi

In an unprecedented illegality, London listed company, Anglo American plc
is processing millions of pounds of sugar cane stolen from Zimbabwe's white
commercial farmers.

Anglo American's sugar estate in Zimbabwe's lowveld, about 300 miles south
east of Harare, is complicit in the theft of potentially 60 000 tonnes of
cane owned by commercial out-growers, as they are called.

Their harvest, and in many cases their properties, were stolen by President
Robert Mugabe's supporters.

None of the approximately 50 privately owned sugar cane farms, each about
240 acres, adjacent to Anglo American's Hippo Estates have yet been legally
acquired by the Zimbabwe government in the chaotic "land reform" program.

Last week, equipment belonging to Anglo's Hippo Estates, was carting cane
from fields, illegally taken over by squatters, or "settlers" as they are
officially called, and transported to their mill which borders the town.

By last Friday, Anglo and South African owned company Triangle Ltd agreed
to pay squatters in August after the extracted sugar is sold.

Farai Musikavanhu public affairs director of the South African-owned mill,
allegedly broke into an out-grower's homestead in February and installed
his brother, while the owners, the Tilbury family are now refugees at a
safari camp.

In Mr Mugabe's ongoing theft of white-owned land, not a single legal
acquisition order for the sugar cane farms has been concluded in favour of
the government in the Administrative Court.

Outgrowers say they cannot move into their fields to cut cane because their
workers, who are still being paid, are beaten each time they venture onto
the land.

South African-born Peter Henning, 63, had his farm "listed" once again, for
"acquisition" last Friday, a lengthy legal process before the government
owns it. His son Greig, 33, had his farm and home taken over last December
by Karakadzai Kanda, a welfare worker in the department of defense in
Masvingo, 120 miles away. He is on leave and was unavailable for comment.

Hippo Valley, and the neighbouring South African company were developed
from virgin, uninhabited land, after Southern Rhodesian engineers brought
water from newly built dams and canals to the area.

The estates, plus black and white out-growers tend 110 000 acres of sugar
cane, the largest sugar estates in central Africa, and the 50 white
out-growers, whose farms have largely passed from father to son, contribute
up to 20 percent of the sugar milled by the two companies.

About 35 percent of the sugar is exported regionally and to Europe and
America under lucrative preferential trade agreements.

The 50 out-growers' farms, were bought and developed by farmers from
Mauritius and South Africa 38 years ago alongside the development of the
two estates.

While legislation prevented blacks from owning land around Chiredzi, after
independence in 1980, about 200 black small-scale sugar farmers were
assisted to full production by the two multinational estates.

They are undisturbed by the whirlwind which trashed commercial agriculture
after Mr Mugabe ordered land invasions three years ago.

After government threats, all 50 white out-growers moved from their homes
last September but a dozen returned, and according to Greig Henning, "we
were hunted down like animals," in high speed car chases through the maze
of sugar fields.

Six were caught and flung into police cells for three days before the
Chiredzi prosecutor declined to prosecute them.

"We are victims of the government's madness over land, and now we are
further persecuted by the British and South African companies taking in
cane stolen from us," said Peter Henning.

"The two companies have refused to comply with letters from our lawyers
asking for the illegal trade in our cane to stop. They have said we can see
them in court," said Eric Le Vieux, 38, a Mauritian whose grandfather saw
the potential for sugar-cane in the barren land in 1958.

 "Some settlers are unable to harvest the cane, which is deteriorating.
They are also denigrating the soil for future generations by excessively
flooding the fields," he said.

The farmers say they pay for water, electricity and other levies for cane
stolen from them.

"It is not merely a financial issue here, there is morality and ethics at
stake. The two companies have become collaborators in an illegal system
which has brought chaos to Zimbabwe," said Mr Le Vieux.

Both estates need out-growers' cane to keep their giant mills running
uninterrupted from seasonal start up in April until the November shut down.

Detailed questions were put in writing to both companies, but they declined
to respond.

Peter Henning says the multi nationals have even disadvantaged the "new"
cane farmers, by agreements which exclude payments for by-products such as

Anglo American's estate is under a "preliminary" acquisition order. Last
week government officials invaded 10 000 acres of sugar fields, jointly
owned between the British and the South African companies, and marked out
plots for a new group of would-be farmers.

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From ZWNEWS, 27 June

Haunting hymns

Exiled Zimbabweans, one woman leaning on a crutch, described beatings,
stabbings and other forms of brutality by thugs of Robert Mugabe’s regime at
a service in London on Thursday commemorating the UN International Day of
Support for Torture Victims. After the 90-minute service at St.
Martins-in-the-Field church in Trafalgar Square, the congregation, including
a Zimbabwean choir, walked in procession to the nearby Zimbabwe High
Commission, and sang, beat drums and laid flowers in memory of opposition
supporters slain by the regime. London office workers and tourists passing
by in brilliant sunshine stared, some anxiously, at the colour posters
outside the High Commission depicting lacerated torsos, distorted features
and beaten skulls, and the words: "Mugabe Regime Perpetrates This – 3 556
Tortured; 574 Abducted and 110 Killed." High Commission staff hastily shut
the doors and kept themselves inside behind dirty net curtains and dusty
photographs of wild life once used to attract visitors to Zimbabwe.

During the service organised by the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum and the
Zimbabwe Association, Shona and Ndebele anthems mixed with traditional
English hymns. While the choir sang the hauntingly beautiful Ndebele hymn
Tinochema Nhai Baba (We Cry Father), a speaker declared against the
background of the descants: "Let’s stand and fight another liberation
struggle." The service opened with the Shona hymn Nguva yakanakisa – which
celebrates the moment of reunion with loved ones who have died. Among the
testimonies, Givemore Chindawi, an opposition activist since he was a
plastics technology student at the Bulawayo Technical College, described
finding the decomposing remains of his father, and the constant warnings
that he would suffer the same fate. From a brave widow’s house in Bulawayo’s
Magwegwe suburb, Chindawi continued distributing MDC T-shirts and other
materials and campaigning for the party. He fled in July 2001 after being
severely beaten by Zanu PF thugs and threatened with death. "The pressure
now is on Mugabe’s regime," said Chindawi. "He is having sleepless nights."

In a testimony read by his sister, broadcaster Georgina Godwin, Zimbabwean
writer Peter Godwin described visiting his mother in hospital in Harare
during the MDC protest stayaway in early June. "The nearby beds began to
fill with black Zimbabwean women, their legs and arms broken, their heads
crunched by the rifle butts of the soldiers and police, their clothes still
infused with acrid fumes of teargas," wrote Godwin. He now lives in the
United States and departed soon afterward. As his plane left Harare airport
he saw three helicopters lifting from a nearby airbase, ready to rain
teargas, and to call in police, army, military and Zanu PF youths to beat
and imprison protesters. "As we soared away I felt the profound guilt of
those who escape," Godwin added. "But there is much we can do even from a
distance. We can ensure that our diaspora does not become dispersed and
diluted. That we remain exiles and not emigrants. That we amplify the
suffering and the bravery of those in the front line as democracy battles
dictatorship...That here there is no smoke screen of anarchy within which to
hide the appalling misdeeds of a desperate regime. That we tell the world
there is no longer a middle ground in this struggle."
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Zimbabwean crisis near to solution: Mozambican president


      Xinhuanet 2003-06-28 04:22:05

        MAPUTO, June 27 (Xinhuanet) -- Mozambican President Joaquim Chissano
has said the Zimbabwean crisis is almost solved thanks to mediation by the
leaders of Southern African Development Community(SADC) countries,
Mozambique News Agency reported Friday.

        Speaking at a meeting with American business people in Washington on
Thursday, Chissano made it clear that he believed the political disputes in
Zimbabwe have been almost overcome.

        Chissano was convinced that sooner rather than later an agreement
between the Zimbabwean government and opposition would be known to the rest
of the world.

        Chissano said he believed all those who claimed that he and other
SADC leaders were doing nothing, or not enough, to solve the Zimbabwean
problem were simply wrong.

        "It has been common for those outside our region to show that they
do not understand very well what is going on between us and amongst us, and
much less about the complexity and delicacy of ourproblems, as in the case
of Zimbabwe," Chissano said.
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Zimbabwe land reform good, but flawed-S.Africa MPs

CAPE TOWN, June 27 — Zimbabwe's drive to redistribute white-owned farms
among landless blacks has failed and is partly to blame for a food crisis
affecting millions of people, a South African parliamentary report said this
       The parliamentary committee report said the programme had ''impacted
negatively on food security,'' although committee chairman Neo Masithela
said the consensus was that the policy itself was sound.
       ''Both the opposition and the ruling party and NGOs agree on one
thing: the land reform policy is one of the best programmes. However, the
manner in which it was implemented is the problem,'' Masithela told Reuters
on Friday.
       South Africa, which faces its own political problems over white land
ownership, has said in the past it saw the need for land reform in Zimbabwe
but disagreed with President Robert Mugabe's controversial farm seizure
       The report by the parliamentary committee on agriculture was compiled
after a visit to Zimbabwe in April.
       Masithela said implementation problems included a lack of skills and
inadequate support from government once new farmers had acquired land.
       He added that Zimbabwean officials said they were in the process of
reviewing the implementation of the programme -- which has been sharply
criticised by London and Washington.
       Earlier this month the United Nations said that despite aid efforts
more than five million Zimbabweans faced starvation, a situation exacerbated
by a spiralling economic crisis along with crippling cash and fuel
       Mugabe argues that the land reforms were necessary to correct the
wrongs of colonialism, which left the bulk of Zimbabwe's fertile land in the
hands of minority whites.
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            Zimbabwean police arrest newspaper editor
            June 27, 2003, 15:45

            Nqobile Nyathi, the Zimbabwean Daily News editor, has been
arrested and charged under the Public Order and Security Act (Posa), the
Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa) reported today.

            Eva Johnsen, a Misa spokesperson, said Nyathi was arrested for
publishing adverts that supposedly insulted President Robert Mugabe. The
adverts were placed in the Daily News by the opposition Movement of
Democratic Change (MDC). They showed a cartoon Mugabe being chased by a
crowd. The wording of the advert was: "Do you recognise him: Thief! Thief!

            The advert goes on to say: "Yes of course we recognise him. We
recognise him as the senile who stole your voice in March 2002. We recognise
him as the father of the militia who murder and rape civilians and women. We
recognise him as a plunderer of our national resources, pensions and all.
Yes, we recognise him as the one denying us the right to express ourselves.
Action for national survival."

            Johnsen said Nyathi today confirmed that she had been summoned
to Harare Central Police Station. Nyathi was quoted as saying: "I was
charged under Posa and they were referring to advertisements that appeared
from the 16th to the 19th of May. I was made to sign a warned and cautioned
statement and they said they are still investigating the case."

            Nyathi became the third senior newsperson to be charged under
Posa. On June 11, Francis Mdlongwa, the editor in chief of the Associated
Newspapers of Zimbabwe (ANZ), the publishers of Daily News, was charged with
publishing a false advertisement when he was still an editor at the
Financial Gazette in 2002.

            Bill Saidi, the editor of Daily News, was also charged on June
24 for allegedly publishing a false story in 2002. - Sapa

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Zimbabwe Formally Asks UN for Food Aid
Peta Thornycroft
27 Jun 2003, 16:14 UTC

AP Photo
Women collect food aid in Chitsungo, Zimbabwe
The World Food Program says more than five million people in Zimbabwe, almost half the population, will need food aid from the international community between now and the next grain harvest in April of next year.

This is the second year in a row that the international community is being asked to supply food to millions of Zimbabweans. The United Nations said this week that the worst affected are hundreds of thousands of former workers from commercial farms.

There are several reasons for Zimbabwe's food crisis. President Robert Mugabe launched a land reform program in mid-2000, which has, in each season since then, seen less crops produced and foreign currency reserves plummet.

Economists say the program, which saw more than 90 percent of productive white farmers evicted from their land, is the major contributor to the collapse of the economy.

In addition, erratic rainfall is also blamed for the shortfall in production, as well the government's inability, because it lacked the money, to import agricultural products and equipment from abroad.

This week, World Food Program officials in Zimbabwe presided over a meeting of foreign donors to plan for yet another round of food shipments from abroad, leading to a peak in distribution between January and April next year.

The Zimbabwe government has formally asked the WFP for continued food aid, but has still not provided statistics on the latest harvest nor projections for summer plantings.

Up until three years ago, Zimbabwe was always able to feed itself, even when droughts hit, as it had enough money to import food when crops failed.

Now Zimbabwe's economy is the fastest shrinking in the world and the country does not have foreign currency to import a whole range of commodities from fuel to ink to print bank notes.

The World Food Program says the more than 200,000 workers who once worked on the commercial farms are particularly threatened. Not only did they lose their jobs when their employers' land was seized, they have not been allocated land on which to grow crops.

But people who live in the city are also suffering. Many of them lack basic foods, such as maize meal. Maize is available on the black market, but not many people in the city can afford to buy it.

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Zimbabwean striking doctors ordered to go back to work


      Xinhuanet 2003-06-28 03:08:20

        HARARE, June 27 (Xinhuanet) -- Zimbabwe's Labor Court on Friday
declared the strike by junior and middle-level doctors illegal and ordered
them to resume duty with immediate effect or no later than Monday.

        Labor Court senior president Energy Chinembiri Bhunu also ordered
the Public Service Commission to complete the regrading system of doctors by
July 4 and to make available the new results to the Hospital Doctors
Association on the same day.

        The recently completed job evaluation exercise has many anomalies,
which need to be corrected, among them the slashing of doctors' salaries.

        Junior and middle-level doctors downed tools on Monday in protest
against the results of the job evaluation exercise which slashed their
salaries. They are demanding an interim cost of living adjustment to cushion
them from economic hardships while their grievances are being looked into.

        Bhunu told the doctors to follow laid down procedures and air their
grievances to the Appeals Committee if they were not satisfied with the
results of the regrading exercise.

        The new grading system, he said, should determine the salaries of

        Public Service Commission legal advisor Nelson Zvidzai said
theAppeals Committee had been set up to redress the anomalies in the job
evaluation exercise.

        "The Appeals Committee is going to be there for up to two yearsto
accommodate and correct all anomalies in the job evaluation exercise," he

        Davies Dhlakama from the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare said
the ministry was aware that the grading system was not correct, not only for
the doctors, but also for the whole health sector.

        The government recently completed a job evaluation exercise whose
primary objective was to place civil servants into their correct grades.
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Bid to search MDC offices
27/06/2003 19:27  - (SA)

Harare - Zimbabwe police on Friday attempted to search the offices of the
main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party for "subversive
materials", an MDC official told AFP.

The official, who asked not to be named, said six police officers led by a
detective inspector, came to the MDC's offices in central Harare armed with
a search warrant.

"The search warrant said they were looking for subversive materials," said
the official, but noted that the police only wanted to search one office -
that of the party's financial director.

They left 45 minutes later, as the financial director was out and his office
locked. "We suspect they think we're keeping lots of money in the offices,"
the MDC official said.

He said the police also left a list of nine MDC activists whom they wanted
to interview.

The government recently accused the MDC of causing cash shortages by
hoarding scarce bank notes to pay activists. The opposition party denies the

Contacted for comment, police spokesperson Oliver Mandipaka told AFP he did
not have any information about the attempted police search.
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Business Day

De Villepin urges 'strong message' to Zimbabwe


French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin called in Johannesburg on
Friday for a "strong message" to  be sent to Zimbabwe, beset by political
violence, widespread hunger  and a collapsed economy.
"It is important to send a strong message to Zimbabwe," he told a press
conference he addressed along with South African Foreign Minister Nkosazana

"What is important is to find the best way to influence the  situation," he
declared, noting South Africa's efforts to reconcile the government of
President Robert Mugabe with the opposition  Movement for Democratic Change.

"Through dialogue and negotiation we are going to find a  solution," he
said. Dlamini-Zuma said: "We (South Africa and France) have no divergence"
on Zimbabwe.

"South Africa is doing something. I don't think we need  pressure. We both
recognise the problems in Zimbabwe but also that a  solution must be found."

De Villepin, who arrived in South Africa on Thursday, was due to  leave
Johannesburg on Friday for Accra, where he will hold talks with Ghanaian
President John Kufuor, who heads the powerful Economic Community of West
African States, and Ghanaian Foreign Minister Addo  Akufo-Addo.

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Fuel: No permit for tourists
27/06/2003 10:32  - (SA)

Johannesburg - Tourists and individuals would be allowed to enter Zimbabwe
with their own fuel without obtaining a permit from the Energy and Power
Development Minister, the Zimbabwean High Commissioner to South Africa said
on Thursday.

The High Commissioner, Simon Moyo, was responding to earlier reports that
the Zimbabwean government has banned motorists from carrying fuel in
containers and that garages would no longer sell fuel in containers.

"Tourists can enter the country with their own fuel and as usual customs
will give them clearance."

People who wanted to transport containers of fuel privately would now have
to obtain permission from the government or face arrest, he said.
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Zimbabwe needs ''roadmap to peace''-oppo leader

By Stella Mapenzauswa

HARARE, June 27 — Zimbabwe's political and economic crisis will continue
unless President Robert Mugabe sets a ''roadmap to peace'' that includes a
re-run of the disputed 2002 election, the country's main opposition leader
       Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai told
Reuters in an interview that U.S. President George W. Bush's visit to Africa
would put new pressure on Mugabe to accept political change.
       ''For the Zimbabwean agenda it is very important to welcome President
Bush's presence in the region. Zimbabwe is again part of the international
radar because of his presence,'' Tsvangirai said late on Thursday.
       ''We expect, of course, political and diplomatic pressure to apply
and...we will do everything in our power to make sure that a clear road map
to peace in Zimbabwe is presented to the American government during the
visit,'' he said.
       Bush is due to visit Senegal, South Africa, Botswana, Uganda and
Nigeria on his first trip to Africa from July 7-12.
       While Zimbabwe is not on Bush's itinerary, it seems sure to figure in
his talks with African leaders.
       In a speech in Washington on Thursday, Bush said it was ''time to
encourage a return to democracy'' in Zimbabwe, while Secretary of State
Colin Powell has urged Zimbabwe's neighbours to pressure Mugabe to cede
power to a transitional government.

       Tsvangirai said the MDC -- which has launched a court challenge to
Mugabe's 2002 victory in presidential polls which several Western
governments say were rigged -- was still willing to talk to Mugabe's ruling
ZANU-PF party.
       ''The first thing is that we are committed to dialogue, to
negotiations. If the outcome of those negotiations is a transitional
government or a government of national unity so be it,'' he said.
       But the veteran trade union leader, who was jailed for two weeks this
month after MDC supporters staged huge anti-Mugabe protests, said the
country's political turmoil would likely continue until new elections are
       ''I'm very confident that the resolution of the Zimbabwe crisis
cannot be achieved unless there is a re-run of restore a
legitimate government in this country.''
       Mugabe insists that he won fairly in 2002 and says the MDC is a
puppet of former colonial power Britain which will only rule in Zimbabwe
''over our dead bodies.''
       Tsvangirai said Mugabe had thwarted a regional initiative mounted by
South Africa, Nigeria and Malawi to resolve Zimbabwe's crisis, which has
driven the economy near collapse.
       Once an African economic star, Zimbabwe now battles chronic food and
fuel shortages and inflation riding at 300 percent, one of the highest rates
in the world.
       ''We have had so many initiatives nationally, regionally and
internationally all coming to naught,'' Tsvangirai said.
       ''Mugabe is not sincere. He's the one who's shooting one initiative
against the other... It also reflects the extent to which the African
leaders have a leverage over Mugabe.''
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S African Daily News

      Going back to his roots
      June 27, 2003

      Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe usually appears stiff and combative
in public, his ramrod posture more pronoun-ced in the face of a deepening
political and economic crisis.

      But the 79-year-old leader relaxed a little at a rally of his ruling
ZANU-PF party this month - cracking jokes, and diving into a crowd of
cheering supporters for handshakes.

      The bunting, political posters and party songs all carried one
message: Mugabe is counting on his rural power base to head off a rising
opposition challenge from the urban areas.

      "We have faith in you," he told about 20 000 supporters, made up
largely of poor peasant farmers in Shurugwi, about 350km south of Harare.

      No one is saying so officially, but in the last month Mugabe has
returned repeatedly to his rural strongholds to display his muscle as the
opposition piles on pressure in urban areas, with strikes and threats of
street protests to drive him from power. It is not an unexpected political
strategy for a man who cut his teeth as the leader of a guerrilla

      "ZANU-PF planted its roots in the rural areas during the liberation
struggle and it has maintained very strong ties with the rural people ever
since," said political analyst Heneri Dzinotyiwei, a professor at the
University of Harare.

      "These are difficult times for ZANU-PF, which is naturally going back
to fight from its strong bases," he said of rural Zimbabwe, where at least
60% of the population live.

      The Shurugwi rally provided a glimpse of how Mugabe intends to play
the game. Crowded with peasant supporters eager for a bit of political
theatre, the gathering was also attended by hundreds of members of the youth
brigades, generally called "Green Bombers", and seen by Mugabe's critics as
his party's eyes, ears - and fists - in the countryside.

      Accused of repression by his political opponents, Mugabe was careful
to urge his young supporters to end violence in their campaign for ZANU-PF,
saying the ruling party was the custodian of the law and its activists had
to be disciplined.

      But there was no doubt about how the party is organised - with a
mixture of military and civilian structures deeply rooted in Zimbabwe's
1970s indep-endence war, which Mugabe
      led jointly until his election as national leader in 1980.

      For many ZANU loyalists, the rally was a call to arms. Mugabe urged
resourcefulness in tackling Zimbabwe's mounting problems, including food and
fuel shortages, runaway inflation and one of the highest rates of HIV/Aids
in the world.

      He also took a sharp swipe at Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the
opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), who stands accused of
treason for allegedly seeking to assas-sinate Mugabe and organising protests
and strikes against
      the government.

      "Tsvangirai is trying to live his wild dream of marching
      to State House at the urging of his British sponsors. That will not be
allowed," Mugabe said, speaking from a podium adorned with a poster urging
supporters to remain steadfast.

      Mugabe blames his country's political and economic problems on Western
and domestic opponents who are against his seizures of white-owned farms for
redistribution to blacks.

      While participants in the rally sang cheerfully along in Shona to such
ZANU-PF an-thems as Mugabe is the Man and We are Ready to Die for Zimbabwe,
outside the parade grounds the atmosphere was a little less upbeat.
Villagers said privately that life had become harder as foreign currency
shortages had left medicine cupboards bare in rural clinics.

      Along the road to Shurugwi, through Zimbabwe's gold-and chrome-mining
belt, villagers battling with a crisis that has seen inflation soar to 300%
are resorting to gold panning and selling the results through both legal and
illegal routes.

      Traditional chiefs told Mugabe they were still assessing the
district's farming output, but were sure some families would need food aid.

      Nearly half of Zimbabwe's population has been surviving on donated
food in the past year after a collapse in the farming sector blamed on
drought and the seizure of commercial farms by the government. But there was
little overt criticism.

      "We know things could be better, but we also know that they are going
to get better if we work harder and remain united," said a 55-year-old
villager, repeating almost verb-atim the official government line on
Zimbabwe's problems.

      "I don't belong to the MDC and so I don't believe that Mugabe and
ZANU-PF are the causes of our problems," he said before walking away.

      The MDC - which has challenged Mugabe's re-election in 2002 polls that
were criticised as rigged by several Western governments - learned the hard
way what happens to those who do blame the veteran leader for the country's

      The party's attempt to organise a "final push" of street protests
against Mugabe ended with hundreds of arrests as ZANU-PF bussed in thousands
of youth brigades and rural supporters to help the army and police snuff out
antigovernment marches.

      Mugabe ended the rally with promises he has made at half a dozen other
gatherings in the past month - vowing to boost social welfare and address
local woes. Then he boarded a helicopter and headed back to town, leaving
the rural people to ponder their increasingly desperate lives. - Reuters
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Botswana Daily News

      Zim army captain seeks asylum in Botswana
      27 June, 2003

      A Zimbabwean National Army captain is seeking political asylum in
Botswana, the Office of the President has confirmed.

      Responding to a BOPA questionnaire, deputy permanent secretary for
political affairs in the Office of the President Bruce Palai confirmed that
Ernest Moyowangu Chuma was being temporarily kept at the Francistown Centre
for Illegal Immigrants.

      "We are able to provide you with the following information, that Mr
Chuma is in custody of Botswana authorities," said Palai.

      Palai further confirmed that Chuma was seeking political asylum and
that his case would be considered in the normal manner, noting that prior to
screening, asylum seekers may be temporarily kept at the Francistown centre.

      BOPA's enquiries followed a story in the Zimbabwean Daily News issue
of June 18 which reported that Chuma, who had been missing from duty for the
past 15 months, was being detained in Botswana.

      According to the newspaper, Chuma fled Zimbabwe after the presidential
elections won by president Robert Mugaabe in March last year allegedly
because he was sought by state security agents who accused him of supporting
the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) in the run-up to the

      He is reported to have escaped to Dukwi Refugee Camp where he met two
Zimbabwean army corporals from Bulawayo's Llewelyn Barracks.

      The two corporals are reported to have escaped to Dukwi after
allegedly being interrogated by the Zimbabwe army's counter-intelligence
branch whose officials also accused them of being MDC members.

      However, the Daily News reported that the two, Irvine Nitni and Peter
Kwanele, had since left Botswana for Australia where they had been granted
political asylum.

      According to the newspaper, Chuma's family was not aware of his
situation but had been worried about his lengthy absence from home.

      "We are not aware of his situation. We do not know whether he is well
or not. We only heard that he fled to Botswana," said a family member who
was not named. BOPA

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Cape Times

      Zimbabwe's opposition rules out power-sharing deal with Zanu-PF
      June 27, 2003

      By Basildon Peta

      Zimbabwe's main opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change
(MDC), has rejected an overture for a government of national unity (GNU) by
President Robert Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF party. MDC spokesman Paul Themba
Nyathi said a unity government was "just not on". It was an illusion on the
part of Zanu-PF, he said.

      The MDC would only participate in a transitional authority with a
mandate to oversee Mugabe's departure from power and the writing of a new
constitution, followed by fresh elections, he said. In an unprecedented
public statement that seemed aimed at extending an olive branch to the MDC,
Zanu-PF spokesman Nathan Shamuyarira said Zanu-PF was prepared to share
power with the MDC.

      Shamuyarira told the Daily News that his party was ready for a
government of national unity but ruled out a transitional authority and
fresh elections as demanded by the MDC.

      Shamuyarira said: "We have had such governments in the 1970s and in
1987 with Zapu. It is a tradition that we have always had and we are ready
for that."

      Shamuyarira's statement was in sharp contrast to Mugabe's previous
statements rejecting a power-sharing deal with the MDC, which he regards as
a puppet of Britain and the West.

      Analysts have suggested that a GNU is the only way forward for
Zimbabwe, allowing both the MDC and Zanu-PF to reconcile their differences
in the interests of the country.
      But Nyathi ruled out a GNU.

      "A government of national unity in Mugabe's thinking is a situation
whereby he co-opts the MDC as a junior partner in his government and
effectively neutralises us as he did with Zapu in 1987 ... That just isn't
on," he said.

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Last Updated: Friday, 27 June, 2003, 21:35 GMT 22:35 UK
Mugabe ends Libya oil talks
President Robert Mugabe
President Mugabe has found it difficult to keep his side of the deal
The President of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, has ended a visit to Libya without any clear indication that he has won a deal to resume crucial Libyan fuel supplies.

A statement released after three rounds of talks between President Mugabe and the Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi, said they were satisfied with the progress of co-operation - but there was no specific mention of any new oil deal.

Libya's state news agency Jana said the two leaders discussed African issues and "ways of strengthening peace and stability in Africa".

The only details available from the statement was that "experts from the two governments, including Zimbabwe Energy and Power Development Minister Amos Midzi, met to review the bilateral co-operation path and the ways to reinforce that co-operation in oil and investment in various economic fields".

Meanwhile, a Zimbabwean newspaper, the Zimbabwe Independent, said President Mugabe's government had approached a French oil company for fuel, although there was no official confirmation of those contacts.

There have been fuel shortages in Zimbabwe since November when the president's previous deal with Libya broke down.

The BBC's Southern African correspondent Barnaby Phillips says neither government likes to give details of the previous deals they have struck, but it is widely believed that the Libyans have been offered land, beef and agricultural commodities in return for fuel.

But as Zimbabwe's agricultural production declines, President Mugabe has found it difficult to keep his side of the deal, and the Libyans have been reluctant to carry on supplying fuel.

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            Zimbabwe wins Libyan pledge on oil trade
            June 27, 2003, 22:45

            Libya has pledged to step up co-operation on oil with Zimbabwe,
more than six months since a fuel supply deal between the two countries
collapsed and left the southern African country facing acute fuel shortages.

            Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwean President, visited oil-rich Libya to
try to revive the barter deal - which broke down after Zimbabwe allegedly
failed to deliver the beef, coffee and tea it had promised.

            In a joint statement, the two governments confirmed their
meeting without giving further details. Experts from both governments,
including Amos Midzi, Zimbabwe's Energy and Power Development Minister, met
to review the bilateral co-operation path and ways to reinforce that
co-operation in oil and investment in various economic fields. The
statement, which was carried by state news agency Jana, was released shortly
after Mugabe flew home at the end of his three-day official visit.

            Mugabe and Muammar Gaddafi, Libyan leader, held at least three
rounds of talks to discuss African issues and "ways of strengthening peace
and stability in Africa", Jana said.

            Zimbabwe's fuel shortages have compounded a deep economic crisis
blamed on Mugabe as he fights an unprecedented political challenge to the
power he has held since the country won independence from Britain 23 years
ago. Libya has provided most of Zimbabwe's oil for the past three years,
during which Zimbabwe has suffered erratic fuel supplies due to a foreign
currency squeeze. - Reuters

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