‘Combine targeted sanctions with smart support’

netherlands_institute_for_multiparty_democracy.jpgHARARE - Western countries should combine current "targeted sanctions" against senior members of Zimbabwe's unity government with "smart support" for reformers within the power-sharing regime, a Dutch democracy

The Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) said the
international community should support reformers within the unity
government between President Robert Mugabe and former opposition leader
Morgan Tsvangirai, particularly in the work towards restoring
democratic rights, the holding of fresh elections and efforts to
rebuild Zimbabwe’s collapsed social sectors.

Rich Western nations with capacity to bankroll Zimbabwe’s
reconstruction have demanded "genuine reforms" in the southern African
country before they resume aid to the unity government formed by
President Robert Mugabe and former opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai
in February.

NIMD said the world should not punish all members of the new Zimbabwe
government for the sins of the previous regime whose members are
accused of human rights abuses and plundering state resources.

Western countries, led by the United States and Britain, have since
2002 imposed "targeted sanctions" against more than 200 members of
Mugabe’s ZANU PF party for their alleged role in human rights abuses in
Zimbabwe.

The officials are not allowed to travel to the US and Europe or to hold assets in these countries.

"Shouldn’t we also think of providing ‘smart support’ for government
officials responsible for providing the essential services, such as
food, health and education, and those who press for the restoration of
democratic rights, a revised constitution, and new elections," the
institute said.

Zimbabwe requires about US$8.3 billion to rebuild its economy and the
Southern African Development Community (SADC) has pledged to contribute
about US$2 billion towards the reconstruction effort.

SADC finance ministers were expected to push for the resumption of
economic aid for Zimbabwe when they met officials from the
International Monetary Fund, World Bank and International Finance
Corporation at the weekend.

Zimbabwean Industry Minister Welshman Ncube and Investment Promotion
Minister Elton Mangoma visited the Netherlands at the weekend on a
mission to market Zimbabwe as a safe investment destination.

While in The Hague, the ministers were expected to discuss the
possibility of receiving support for democratic reforms and the
reconstruction of Zimbabwe with politicians and aid agencies.

They were also scheduled to meet the Dutch Minister for International Cooperation, Bert Koenders. – ZimOnline

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