EU ‘concerned’ over Zim violence upsurge

The European Union (EU) is said to be concerned about worsening violence in Zimbabwe, which an MEP has said is reason for targeted ‘sanctions’ against ZANU PF to remain in place.

MEP Geoffrey Van Orden, who spearheads the European Parliament’s campaign for democratic change in Zimbabwe, said in a statement that they are worried because of “a recent upsurge in violence against those that oppose (Robert) Mugabe.”

Van Orden’s comments followed a discussion in Brussels this week which was addressed by Lovemore Madhuku and Munjodzi Mutandiri, both from the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA). The discussion focused on the ongoing constitutional drafting process and the need for free and fair elections in Zimbabwe.

Van Orden said in a statement: “Elections are not a single event but a lengthy process. They have to take place before April 2013. A road map to elections needs to be set out, and vital to this is a new Constitution.

SADC, the Commonwealth and the wider international community should now do all that they can to support improved electoral arrangements, including voter registration and electoral education. There must also be complete freedom of the media and an end to all politically-motivated violence.”

He added: “The EU’s ‘restrictive measures’ which target Mugabe and his inner circle must remain in place until there is real evidence of change. These measures do not harm the Zimbabwean people, and are aimed exclusively at the clique which keeps Mugabe in power.”

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