EU to review relations with Zimbabwe

The European Union will review its relations with Zimbabwe taking into account recent developments, it has announced.

In a statement, the Foreign Affairs High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton, said the EU shared the serious concerns raised in initial assessments of the elections by regional bodies.

“The EU welcomes the constructive role played by the Southern African Development Community, African Union and domestic observers during the electoral process and shares the serious concerns raised in their initial assessments.

“It also takes note of the conclusions of the SADC Summit on August 18 and looks forward to the final reports of the observation missions,” she said.

Ashton said the EU underlined the importance and need to continue strengthening reforms to ensure that future elections were fully transparent and credible as well as peaceful.

“The EU will review its relations with Zimbabwe, taking account of all these factors. Our goal is to support the Zimbabwean people in achieving a more prosperous and democratic Zimbabwe, as a sure foundation for the future full normalisation of relations between Zimbabwe and the EU,” she said.

The EU has in the past said that if the elections are declared free and fair and there are no protests from other political parties it would lift its sanctions on Zimbabwe.

SADC, in its preliminary report, described the elections as free and peaceful but declined to call the elections fair and legitimate. The body said it would only deal with those issues in its final report.

Zanu (PF)’s main rival in the elections, the Morgan Tsvangirai led MDC, has refused to accept the outcome, describing them as a fraud.

Robert Mugabe was declared the winner with 61 percent of the ballot, against Tsvangirai's 34 percent and was inaugurated in Harare today.

Ashton took note of the declaration of the Constitutional Court of Zimbabwe of Mugabe as the winner, saying it brought “the electoral process to its formal conclusion”.

Tsvangirai, however, has not yet abandoned the legal route. This week he filed a notice of appeal with the Supreme Court against the ruling by the Electoral Court that it had no jurisdiction to hear his petition seeking to compel the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to release voting material used in the July 31 elections.

Post published in: News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *