Zimbabwe Vigil Diary – 27th October 2007

LONDON - A grey day - brightened by the unexpected appearance of Judith Todd, straight from an overnight flight from Cape Town. She is here to promote her book "Through the Darkness".  We were thrilled that we were her first port of call and that this brave campaigner for Zimbabwe was so encouraging. "I'm so grateful for the work of the Vigil", she said. 

The EU, in its ignorant greed, seems likely to invite Mugabe (see letter in today’s Telegraph by Geoffrey van Orden, British Member of the European Parliament -  http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2007/10/27/nosplit/dt2701.xml).  The Vigil and the Zimbabwe Central London Forum are working on plans to stage a protest in Lisbon during the summit.  

We have now sent letters to all 27 EU members about our petition calling for pressure on member countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) because of their complicity in what is happening in Zimbabwe. We took the opportunity to express our disquiet at the African blackmailing of the European Union to invite Mugabe.  We are now writing to SADC members to tell them about the petition.

we were pleased to have with us, Patson Muzuwa, Chair of our partner organization, the Zimbabwe Association, which helps Zimbabwean asylum seekers.  He has been working hard in support of Zimbabweans on hunger strike in Yarlswood Detention Centre.  They are threatened with deportation to Malawi because they arrived in Britain on bogus papers bought from the Malawi Embassy in Harare.  

People sometimes ask why we record the numbers signing the register every week. Well the simple reason is that so many groups exaggerate attendance.  In our case invariably more people attend than sign the register but on the opposite extreme one website reported that 1500 people attended the Lovemore Moyo Northampton meeting on 13th October (http://changezimbabwe.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=798&Itemid=2).  We hear from those who attended there were only about 50 people as reported in the Zimbabwean. These lies expose us to ridicule.

For this week’s Vigil pictures: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/

FOR THE RECORD:  140 signed the register.

FOR YOUR DIARY:  Monday, 29nd October 2007, 7.30 pm. Central London Zimbabwe Forum.  We will be working on our plans to go to Portugal in December. Venue: downstairs function room of the Bell and Compass, 9-11 Villiers Street, London, WC2N 6NA, next to Charing Cross Station at the corner of Villiers Street and John Adam Street.

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