11 December 2017
   
Gukurahundi: give us a break, says ED’s aide
MPs rage over illegally deployed army
Envoys to Algeria set cops on fellow Zims
Mpofu says saved by wife from mad Grace
Victims identify rogue soldiers at army HQ
Editors seen as pawns of Zanu PF factions
Parties demand 8 more weeks for voter entry
Councillors vow to Grab land doled by Chombo
MORE NEWS
Econet leads as mobile subscribers over 13m
Miners need $400m for 2018 operations
MORE BUSINESS
Intwasa extra to celebrate a new Zim
Zodwa Wabantu fails to turn up - again
MORE SHOWBIZ
SA: Rusike brace lifts Maritzburg
Zimbabwe Cricket cash crisis worsens
MORE SPORTS
Zims duped! It’s about Zanu PF for ever
Mnangagwa presidency built on quicksand
MORE OPINION
 
The Mugabe prophecy that never was
Opposition: An inconvenient truth
MORE COLUMNISTS
 
 
EU to decide Zim sanctions Monday
17/02/2013 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter
 
Rights concerns ... UK foreign secretary, William Hague
 
RELATED STORIES
Why Zimbabwe sanctions boomerang
Incompetence the problem, not just sanctions
Sanctions: Zimbabwe ends West engagement
Sanctions will not break us: Mugabe
Bredenkamp sues UK govt over sanctions
Australia announces further sanctions lift
West moves to re-engage Zimbabwe
US lifts sanctions on 8 Zanu PF officials
Obama administration reaches out to Mugabe
Western countries will accept Mugabe victory
EU trying to divide us: Zanu PF
US says no change on Zim sanctions
UK protest group targets Chinamasa
Zanu PF rejects EU sanctions lift
EU suspends sanctions on 81 individuals
Chinamasa breaks ice with London trip
Only 10 Zimbabweans to stay on EU sanctions
SA MPs want Zim sanctions lifted
Zanu PF: EU sanctions decision‘outrageous'
EU lifts sanctions on 27, one company
Belgium, UK agree Marange sanctions lift

EUROPEAN foreign ministers will on Monday discuss lifting sanctions against the country following President Robert Mugabe's announcement that a referendum on the new constitution would be held mid next month.

The EU sanctions expire on Wednesday and a decision on the way forward has been delayed because of a disagreement between Britain and Belgium over lifting a ban on gold and diamonds mined in the country.

According to the UK's Telegraph newspaper, crisis talks between British and Belgian diplomats went on into the weekend over Belgium's insistence that the state-run Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC), a major diamond and gold mining company, should be struck off the sanctions list.

If agreement cannot be found, the EU's current sanctions against Zimbabwe, targeting 112 individuals including President Mugabe and 11 companies, will expire.

The row over gold and diamond mining is the only barrier to lifting measures targeting around 20 Zimbabweans covered by an assets freeze and travel ban to be removed from the list.

Rights groups claim violations continue at the Marange diamond fields but Belgium, home to Antwerp, the world's largest diamond trading centre, has insisted that conditions have changed and sanctions on ZMDC are no longer justified.

Britain is concerned that it is too early to lift the key economic sanction before elections and that allowing the lucrative diamonds trade could be used to fund Mugabe's Zanu PF party.

Global Witness, a human rights campaign group, has warned that diamond revenues could be used to fund violence in this year's election.

"The Belgian government is claiming concern for the Zimbabwean people; however its true interests are closer to home in the diamond markets of Antwerp," said Emily Armistead, a spokesman for the group.

The constitutional referendum, set for March 16, will lead to new elections to end the coalition government between Mugabe and long term rival Morgan Tsvangirai, currently Prime Minister.

Despite deep divisions over policy between Zanu PF and Tsvangirai’s MDC-T party, the coalition government has been credited with helping ease political tensions and nursing the country’s economy back recovery.

Both Mugabe and Tsvangirai have also repeatedly called on supporters to ensure a peaceful vote and to desist from the violent clashes experienced during the inconclusive 2008 ballot.



Advertisement


 
Email this to a friend Printable Version Discuss This Story
Share this article:

Digg it

Del.icio.us

Reddit

Newsvine

Nowpublic

Stumbleupon

Face Book

Myspace

Fark

 
 
 
comments powered by Disqus
 
RSS NewsTicker