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BBC: Thursday, 8 June, 2000, 20:07 GMT 21:07 UK
Amnesty accuses Zimbabwe

Mugabe: Government accused of planning rights violations
Amnesty International says "state-sponsored terrorism" against opponents of President Robert Mugabe is threatening free and fair elections in Zimbabwe.

The human rights group accused President Mugabe's government of deliberately planning human rights violations in the run-up to parliamentary elections at the end of this month.

President Mugabe continued campaigning on Thursday, urging voters to back him and show the UK that he had solid support.

He told white farmers that they had only themselves to blame if they were killed while opposing war veterans' attempts to take over their land.

"If you fire at the comrades and they retaliate and you are shot dead, who do you blame?" he asked.

He said his drive to seize farms for black people would continue, although the country might suffer international criticism.

"The country is ours and we have the sovereign right to our natural resources, and the greatest of these resources is land, " he said, at a rally of 5,000 supporters of his Zanu-PF party in the town of Gutu, 260km (160 miles) south-east of Harare.

"We will not settle for political power without economic power."


Amnesty International's Africa Director Maina Kiai, who comes from Kenya, said Zanu-PF supportes were repeating the human rights' abuses that characterised the white Rhodesian government they ousted in 1980.

"There is a deliberate plan. It started with the farmers, then moved to the farm workers and on to teachers and businessmen and now to the opposition," Mr Kiai said.

At least 27 people have died and hundreds, mainly supporters of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), have been beaten, raped or forced to flee their homes.

The president's opponents say he has promised land to the poor to bolster his flagging support in rural areas, his traditional stronghold, and punish farmers and their workers for favoring the opposition.

Amnesty said that President Mugabe was using the self-styled war veterans to carry out his political agenda.

"The war veterans are a controllable group with a clear structure and this group is now being used by the government," Mr Kiai said.

The US Senate's powerful Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday approved a bill to suspend bilateral aid to Zimbabwe.

The measure, which must also win approval from the US Senate, would allow funding to help democratic institutions to fight the result of the election if it is not judged free and fair.

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US Sanctions Would Hurt Zimbabwe People -Opposition

Jun 8 2000 1:36PM ET

HARARE, Zimbabwe (Reuters) - Zimbabwe's main opposition party Thursday welcomed U.S. condemnation of President Robert Mugabe's handling of a land crisis, but warned economic sanctions would hurt average Zimbabweans the most.

The powerful U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday approved a bill to suspend bilateral U.S. assistance to Zimbabwe until democracy and the rule of law are restored.

The bill, which still must be approved by the full Senate, would direct U.S. officials at multilateral lending institutions to oppose loans, credit lines or other benefits to Zimbabwe's government. It also would help democratic groups mount legal challenges to the election results or repressive practices.

``As a general principle we are not in favor of sanctions against Zimbabwe because they hurt the ordinary public without necessarily resulting in a change in government policy,'' said Eddie Cross of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

``What we do welcome is the very strong condemnation of the failure by President Mugabe's government to adhere to fundamental principles as we go toward the elections,'' Cross, the MDC's secretary for economic affairs, told Reuters.

Officials in Mugabe's government were not available to comment on the bill, called the Zimbabwe Democracy Act.

A state-sponsored land grab of hundreds of white-owned farms for redistribution to landless blacks has plunged agriculture -- the backbone of Zimbabwe's economy -- into crisis.

At least 27 people have been killed, hundreds beaten and thousands forced to flee violence linked to the land dispute and party rivalry ahead of parliamentary elections on June 24-25.

Sen. Bill Frist, a Republican of Tennessee who drafted the bill, said Mugabe, in power since independence from Britain in 1980, had become more totalitarian and was backing the farm invasions to sidestep an economic crisis blamed on his misrule.

Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF party faces its toughest challenge yet at the polls from the labor-backed MDC formed last year.

The United States has already frozen an Agency for International Development (AID) program for Zimbabwe's now-suspended land reform program, and the State Department has warned it will watch the election closely before considering a $15 million aid request from Zimbabwe.

International donors have already suspended aid to Zimbabwe and foreign bankers fear the country may default on external debt estimated at around $4.5 billion, because of its acute foreign currency shortage which is hampering interest payments.

Zimbabwean economist John Robertson said the suspension of U.S. aid would send a tough message to Harare, but it would have little immediate effect on an already struggling economy.

``It doesn't make much of a difference to the amount of money flowing in immediately because we have already lost aid from several key donors, but our main quest now is to get back into their good books,'' Robertson said.

``It (the U.S. bill) does send a very dramatic message that we have to change our government policies drastically for that to happen.''

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Mugabe Says Farmers Will Die If They Resist Squatters, AFP Says

Bloomberg News
Jun 8 2000 11:55AM

Mpandawana, Zimbabwe, June 8 (Bloomberg) -- Zimbabwe's president, Robert Mugabe, said white farmers will die if they resist armed squatters occupying their farms, Agence France-Presse reported, ``If they try and resist (the squatters) they will die,'' Mugabe said at a rally in the settlement of Mpandawana, 130 miles southeast of Harare. Since the government in mid-February lost a referendum aimed at strengthening its powers, squatters have invaded more than 1,500 of about 4,000 white-owned commercial farms in Zimbabwe, AFP said.

Zimbabwe last week identified 804 mostly white-owned farms that it plans to seize for resettlement of black peasants.

(Agence France-Presse, 6/8/2000)
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has urged landless Namibians to follow

his country's example and forcibly reclaim their land if white farmers
refuse to share it, a Namibian newspaper reported on Friday. "If the other
neighbouring countries have problems similar to the ones we have
encountered, why not apply the same solution as Zimbabwe? It is a simple
solution," The Namibian quoted Mugabe as saying in Namibia on Thursday.
Mugabe, flanked by Namibian President Sam Nujoma and Prime Minister Hage
Geingob, addressed a rally in northern Namibia to mark Africa Day. "If they
(the white commercial farmers) are ready to discuss with you and give land
then there is no need for a fight. But in Zimbabwe the British are not
ready and we are making them ready now," Mugabe was quoted as saying. "A
boyfriend can accept a no from a girlfriend, but a freedom fighter can
never accept a no from an imperialist," Mugabe added. Hundreds of veterans
of Zimbabwe's 1970s liberation war have invaded more than a thousand white
commercial farms demanding land they say was stolen from their forefathers
by white colonists. At least 23 people mostly black people have been
killed, hundreds beaten or raped and many others forced to flee their homes
in the face of the government-sponsored land invasions and political
intimidation over the past three months. -Independent Online

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Zimbabwe's Gold Industry Could Close in Six Weeks, DPA Says

Bloomberg News
Jun 8 2000 10:25AM

Harare, Zimbabwe, June 8 (Bloomberg) -- Gold output in Zimbabwe, Africa's third-biggest producer, may grind to a halt in six weeks because of a shortage of chemicals and equipment, Deutsche Presse-Agentur reported, citing James Maposa, president of Zimbabwe's Chamber of Mines, which represents most of the country's mining companies. Zimbabwean gold mines, starved of foreign currency to buy imports, have only enough cyanide to process gold for another six weeks and are also short of explosives and equipment. Gold output, which totaled 30 metric tons last year, was 45 percent below normal in April, said Maposa.

Gold, which earned Zimbabwe $240 million last year, is Zimbabwe's second-biggest export after tobacco, with some of the world's biggest mining companies, including Rio Tinto Plc. and Anglo American Plc, operating gold mines there.

(DPA 6/8 or for the DPA's Web site.)

Parties threaten court action on shambolic register

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Thousands missing from roll

Zimbabwe Financial Gazete 8 June 2000 - Abel Mutsakani

ZIMBABWE'S eagerly-awaited general election was thrown into turmoil this week when thousands of ordinary people complained that their names are missing from the voters' roll and opposition parties accused the government of leaving out from the roll young voters and whites sympathetic to them.

The country's largest opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), yesterday threatened to take the matter to court unless Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede undertakes in writing to prepare a supplementary roll of all the people omitted from the roll released last month.

A supplementary register would enable the people who have been omitted from the roll to vote in the June 24-25 poll.

But Mudede immediately dismissed the charges as unfounded. "Surely if it was intended that a certain section of the community should be disenfranchised, then why put the voters' roll to public inspection?" Mudede asked.

"This allegation is unfounded and baseless," he said. Mudede has in the past been accused by opposition parties of manipulating the voter registration in favour of the ruling ZANU PF party.

Mudede said the turnout of voters at various centres set up across the country for voters to inspect the roll had been low and the number of people whose names had been omitted could only be clear at the end of the inspection exercise.

In a snap survey in Harare yesterday, this newspaper found dozens of voters at the inspection centres angrily arguing with Mudede's officers after being told that their names were not on the voters' register.

One top Harare business executive was shocked to discover that although himself, his wife and teenage son registered at the same centre and on the same day, his son's name did not appear on the roll.

The officers told the business executive that his son could still re-register but would not be able to vote in the coming election because no supplementary roll was being prepared.

"This is clearly an orga-nised plan to disenfranchise the young people," the incensed executive, who preferred not to be named, said.

Out of five Financial Gazette workers who went to their respective constituencies to check if their names were appearing on the roll, only two were listed.

Joseph Ngwawi, a senior reporter with this paper and a resident of Dzivaresekwa constituency, was told by officers manning the inspection centre at Warren Park One Primary School that his name did not appear on the voters' roll and that he could re-register but would only be able to vote in the 2005 parliamentary elections.

Thelma Chikwanha, a proofreader with this paper, could not find her name on the roll although she registered in February well before the April 16 registration deadline for the coming election.

Abel Kaingidza, also with this paper, could not find his name on the voters' roll at Mabvuku Primary School in his Mabvuku constituency but the officers there re-registered him and told him he would be able to vote in this month's election.

Mudede said voters whose names had been left out would be allowed to re-register and vote in the June election only if "there is evidence that an omission took place and it can be established beyond doubt that a voter who had registered before was not listed on the voters' roll".

Mudede did not indicate what type of evidence Zimbabweans had to produce to show they had registered. During an exercise to register voters conducted by Mudede's office earlier this year, no receipts or any form of proof was given to all who registered, sparking a public outcry.

Mudede ignored the complaints.

Isaac Manyemba, secretary-general of the opposition Zimbabwe Union of Democrats (ZUD), said: "Where does Mudede expect the evidence to come from when he knows his officers did not give people receipts when they registered? Or is he saying his officers are able to remember the faces of all the people who passed before them during the so-called voter registration exercise? This man is insulting our intelligence."

Manyemba said besides the omission of several thousand young party supporters, investigations by ZUD had also established that many names of deceased people, particularly in the party's Harare South stronghold, still appeared on the voters' roll.

Manyemba said ZUD was now preparing a comprehensive list of its members who registered before the April 16 registration deadline.

The United Parties (UP) publicity and information secretary David Mukome said the majority of his party's supporters registered by school-leavers employed by Mudede during a door-to-door voter registration campaign at the beginning of the year did not appear on the roll.

In one case, UP parliamentary candidate for Mhondoro West constituency Titus Mukarati had found that 300 supporters at his home who had registered were not on the roll.

"The government cleverly ensured that there would be no evidence by not giving these people receipts and now there is no proof that they indeed registered in the first place," Mukome said.

The MDC's David Coltart said his party was setting up a hotline just to handle thousands of complaints from members whose names are missing from the roll.

"If Mudede does not give us assurances in writing that these people who have been omitted will be re-registered and issued with receipts and a supplementary roll prepared in time for them, then we will have no option but to seek the courts' intervention," he told the Financial Gazette.

A legal wrangle over the voters' roll could delay the potentially history-drawing poll.

Last month the MDC successfully appealed to the High Court to delay the nomination of candidates from May 29 to June 3 because the government had fixed the nomination and election dates before the voters' roll had been published.

A committee that was marking out constituency boundaries had also not finished its work at the time, making it difficult for candidates to know which constituency they could stand in and which voters could support their nomination as required by law.


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MAPUTO, June 8 (AFP)- Zimbabwean commercial farmers are due to 
start settling in Mozambique's central Manica province this month
under an agricultural agreement with the local authorities.
   According to provincial governor Felicio Zacarias, the agreement 
envisages a total of about 150 farmers who shall develop agriculture
and livestock in Barrue district, between the rivers Pungue and
   Speaking on state television, Zacarias said there are more than 
500,000 hectares (1.2 million acres) of virgin land in the area with
good conditions for a variety of cereals and tobacco.
   The agreement allowing the Zimbabweans to farm in Mozambique has 
nothing to do with the land crisis at home. The governor said the
project had been under negotiation for about two years.
   Analysts say, however, that the Mozambican government's approval 
of the agricultural project, comes as a major relief anyway for some
of the Zimbabwean farmers currently facing expropriation of land
ahead of the country's legislative elections due 24-25 June.
   More than 1,500 farms have been seized from the mostly white 
farmers since the crisis began last February.
   The Manica governor said there was enough fertile land in the 
province and therefore little potential for land conflicts.
   The Zimbabwean farmers are not coming to Mozambique to buy land, 
but simply to use it on renewable concessions of up to 50 years as
the country's constitution makes it clear that all land belongs to
the state and cannot be sold or privitised.
   A similar project involving 200,000 hectares (490,000 acres) of 
arable land is under implementation in the northern province of
   Mozambican and South African farmers have been working on the 
land both individually or in joint ventures under a 1996
agricultural development agreement between their two countries.
   Although this project went through a number of hiccups resulting 
in the withdrawal of the South African Chamber for Agricultural
Development (SACADA), the Mozagrius programme is taking off again.
   SACADA held 50 per cent in Mozagrius Development Corporation 
(SDM)'s land concessionaire, the other 50 per cent being held by the
Mozambican state.
   Now that SACADA has given up, the Mozambican and South African 
farmers want to take some shares themselves.
   Agriculture plays a key role in Mozambique's economic 
development, representing about 28 per cent of GDP and involves some
78 per cent of the active population.
   The area of potentially arable land is estimated at 36 million 
hectares (90 million acres), although less than 30 per cent of that
is cultivated.

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WASHINGTON, June 8 (AFP) - The United States upped the level of 
its rhetoric against Zimbabwe on Thursday, blasting what it called a
"campaign of violence and intimidation" by the ruling party.
   "Given the long-standing US friendship for the people of 
Zimbabwe, we are deeply troubled that Zimbabwe's previous reputation
as a law-abiding, democratic society is in jeopardy," State
Department spokesman Philip Reeker said.
   Political violence has left 29 people dead in Zimbabwe since 
February, when squatters led by veterans of the southern African
country's independence war began occupying white-owned farms, often
   Squatters have now occupied about 1,500 white-owned farms. 
   The government last week listed 841 white-owned farms -- many of 
them not occupied -- that it will seize without payment and
distribute to landless blacks.
   The political climate has only gotten more tense in advance of 
parliamentary elections set for June 24-25.
   The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), the main opposition 
party which is posing a serious challenge to the ruling ZANU-PF
party, has accused the government of rigging the voters' roll.
   President Robert Mugabe in turn has accused white farmers of 
forcing their workers to support the MDC.
   "We call on the government of Zimbabwe to immediately take the 
necessary steps so that all Zimbabweans can vote freely and without
fear in this month's parliamentary election," Reeker said in a
   "The United States supports the development of a vibrant 
democracy in Zimbabwe," he said.
   "Democracy cannot flourish, and indeed will be hindered for 
years to come, unless the government of Zimbabwe ends the occupation
of farms, allows the police to investigate political crimes, and
recalls the supporters it has directed to intimidate the population
at large."
   Reeker's statement made no mention of possible sanctions, 
although the United States has already suspended several million
dollars that had been set aside for the land redistribution
   But a US Senate panel Wednesday voted unanimously to suspend all 
bilateral aid to Zimbabwe, including debt relief, over the political
   The bill approved by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee 
would also require US representatives at multilateral lending
institutions to vote against loans to Zimbabwe.
   The measure still needs approval by the full Senate and by the 
House of Representatives before being presented for President Bill
Clinton's consideration.

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HAVANA, June 8 (AFP) - The Cuban government denied Thursday that 
two Cuban doctors who have defected in Zimbabwe were "political
refugees" or were at risk of persecution if they return home.
   "It is up to the Zimbabwean authorities to make the decisions 
that they find appropriate" concerning the two doctors Leonel
Cordova, 31, and Noris Pena, 25, now that they have broken their
work contracts, as well as immigration regulations in Zimbabwe,
government spokeswoman Aymee Hernandez stated.
   On May 25, the two were reported to have abandoned their group 
of 150 Cubans, who were in Zimbabwe to practice in rural areas,
seeking visas to settle in Canada.
   A Harare newspaper reported Wednesday that they had been removed 
by force from a UN safe house in the capital of Harare and have been
detained by Zimbabwean immigration officials.
   The US State Department has urged the government of Zimbabwe to 
grant political asylum hearings to the doctors and comply with UN
international political refugee conventions.

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Zimbabwe's ruling Zanu-PF party has embarked on a campaign to win the
hearts and minds of South Africans, and has appointed a spin doctor who
aims to polish the tarnished image of President Robert Mugabe's government.
"It's an uphill battle, but a welcome challenge," said Musekiwa Kumbula of
his job.

Zanu-PF is using South Africa as a "gateway to world opinion". In recent
weeks the likes of Justice Minister Emerson Mnangagwa have been on local
radio and TV, extolling their party's view on the current crisis over land
redistribution. A 15-member delegation of Zanu-PF officials has also been
meeting with various media, political parties and organisations here.
Kumbula said the aim of these forays was to put events in Zimbabwe into

Kumbula, who has been living in South Africa for the past eight years,
describes himself as "a lifelong member of Zanu-PF". He runs his own
company, Trans Africa Communications Consultancy, based in Bedfordview.
Said Kumbula: "The feeling in Zimbabwe is that there has been a total
onslaught in terms of the media coverage of what's been happening there. It
seems as if there has been an orchestrated media campaign to cast Zimbabwe
in a negative light. The feeling is that there are those bent on demonising
the president and his government. Then there are those who do so through
ignorance, and it is the latter whom we are trying to reach. We're trying
to engage key people in the media, politics and business. This is why we
are conducting this counter-strategy in South Africa, it is the gateway to
world opinion."

The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has also done some
campaigning within South Africa, addressing gatherings and meeting with
business leaders and politicians to garner support for its bid to trounce
Zanu-PF in the elections. Kumbula insisted that "we are not emulating the
MDC, we've been doing this before them".

At least 24 people, most of them black supporters of the opposition MDC,
have been killed and hundreds beaten by Zanu-PF supporters who have invaded
hundreds of farms. Neither the police nor Mugabe have attempted to stem the
bloodshed. Kumbula countered that violence in Zimbabwe is nowhere near the
levels experienced in South Africa during the run-up to the 1994 election -
or the violence in places such as Richmond where fighting in the rural
KwaZulu Natal town saw dozens killed. Kumbula said their campaign was to
contextualise the situation in Zimbabwe and allay fears of anarchy.

"Business will be engaged because we know that Zimbabwe and South Africa
and all the SADC countries are inter-dependent," he said. Part of the
campaign will include making high-ranking Zanu-PF officials and ministers
accessible to the media and other interested parties. Kumbula said: "The
media must be balanced and objective - some journalists won't allow the
facts to get in the way of a good story. The reality is that Zimbabwe is
not going up in flames. You should go visit Harare and see for yourself,"
he said. -Independent Online

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Sadly .......
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As generations upon generation are born on African soil, one surely looks back at the achievements and the contributions we have made in our progress along the journey of life. Why is it so difficult to establish and implement a programme of reform and development in a spirit of reconciliation and nation building for all Countries in Africa to share in?

The times one hears of inequalities and the struggle to liberate one party or particular movement from another, from the terrible wrongs of the past. The destruction of people and the total collapse of the economies as a result of actions taken by Governments and Movements for the supposed benefit, to free and uplift the deprived.

This great dream of an African renascence should be one of pride for the whole of Africa and the World to share in. There should be no boundaries as to race or religion in the pursuit of this excellence. The ability to seek solutions to long term problems, for the quick solutions to short-term issues, will have no benefit to the Continent. The continuous plundering of the resources with little to show in Countries of poverty is surely the result of greed and no consideration for the majority it was meant to represent. The free spirits of enterprise in developing Countries are lost, in the knowledge that to limit opportunity is to limit possibilities.

If there is a vision or a slight chance for a recovery to a spiralling decline in the basic standard of living, then it is surely a moral responsibility for the African Continent first. Then the World to seek solutions to never ending problems within Africa and continuous plundering of it's resources. Once all your deposits and reserves are exhausted and depleted you will have nothing to Bata with. The East along with the West would have NO cause surely to do business in countries that have no reciprocal benefits. The continent will be as it has been a drain on resources that are desperately needed to assist European Countries, which need help just as much as you do.

At what stage will a mile stone or turning point be reached to stop the destructive forces of collusion through out the World in it's endeavour to seek favour or fortune at the expense and peril of developing Countries.

Create a climate for the World to seek benefit in investment that has stability, harnessed to democratic values and principals. Build a proud Nation that has tolerance and respect of each other's cultures and values.

For without a foundation to a society that has not seen the reflection of the passed sadness in it's destructive path, it surely cannot move forward to a future of love, peace and harmony for the brothers and sisters of African Nations who love it so dearly.

We pray Dear Lord, we will one day find wisdom where we see a future for the children that have peace in their hearts filled with love and prospects of dreams for generations to follow.

God Bless Dear Africa, for you have so much to offer.

Yours sincerely

Albert & Kathy Weidemann

1 Ambrose Road


North Yorkshire





07 June 2000 23:44
Subject: Charting the progress of EU rights and freedoms The Times 06.06.2000

Richard A. Edwards
(lecturer in law)
Dear Sir,
I read your article with interest, I do realise you are a very busy man and have a great deal on your plate. 
I have written to many Political Party officials, Human Rights Watch,Secretary-General Of The Commonwealth and a Church programme, news papers etc. On the terrible crises in Zimbabwe and feel, helpless knowing that the Country and so many who dearly love Zimbabwe are being torn apart in conflict of racism,hatred , intolerance, and persecution that has crippled the economy. Lord knows that all these Politicians and organisations have known of this CRISES for many years and seen it coming.
I do now believe that after speaking with many people and reading the reports on the internet and in the news, that Zimbabwe is NOT being assisted to a degree that is may, I say an acceptable standard. My reasons as follows in no particular order:
1. When did the Commonwealth and other Countries decide that the crises in Zimbabwe needed internal monitors or help for that matter. 
2. When did those monitors get put in to the various stations
3. How many Countries are involved in the contingent of this force
4. The most senior high ranking member of the Commonwealth team, that has been linked to Mugabe and the Diamond Company Oryx (interesting name) due to be floated on the London stock exchange. How badly has that compromised the frame work in Zimbabwe and in London for this process.
5. Why as the lead up to the Elections in Zimbabwe, have the media been silenced so, quickly. Could it possibly be that South Africa may play a part in this picture. Not mentioning the fact that it's involved in negotiating deals and inspecting in Ireland.Cyril Rymaposa - inspecting, Brian Currin - orange order talks marches due in July. Not for getting the Football World cup that I am sure South Africa will get.
6. Why have South Africa not sent troops in to bring some kind of order back in to the Country
7. What groups bodies or other organisations is Mugabe directly or indirectly involved in i.e.:Commonwealth etc.
8. Mugabe fixed a date for elections on the 15 May for the 24 & 25 July (correction - KC - should read "June"), not because of Don Mckinnon's visit but because he was tactically and strategically ready.    
I don' t have a great education, but when I stand out in a field and feel a breeze on my face followed with a change in temperature, darkening clouds and a clap of thunder I know what will surely follow.
Political Business with the East and the West, has a give and take. Who is going to be sacrificed for what this time. BE very careful of the knock on effect.
The economy is in ruins, and Mugabe purchase arms form the East, has officials on his payroll,  murder, rape, floats a Company on the London Stock Exchange that has links to illegal diamonds in the Congo and has broken just about every law in the Country and the policies and principals he have signed for with other Democratic Governments.
yours sincerely
Albert Weidemann
1 Ambrose Road
North Yorkshire
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