EU lifting Mugabe ban inconsequential - Zanu-PF

2015-02-04 12:03
Robert Mugabe (AP)

Robert Mugabe (AP)

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Harare - The European Union's decision to lift a travel ban on Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe while he serves as African Union chairperson is "inconsequential", his ruling party said on Wednesday.

Zanu-PF spokesperson Simon Khaya Moyo told the official Chronicle newspaper that the temporary lifting of the ban, announced in Brussels on Tuesday, was "an effort to hoodwink the continent".

"The announcement is inconsequential," Moyo was quoted as saying.

EU spokesperson Catherine Ray announced Mugabe would be allowed to travel to the EU in his new capacity as AU chair. Mugabe will hold the post for a year.

Ray could not say if Grace Mugabe would also be allowed to travel with him.

The EU imposed a travel ban and an asset freeze on Mugabe, now 90, his wife Grace, and dozens of his associates in 2002 in response to allegations of rights abuses and vote rigging.

The restrictions against all ruling party-linked officials have since been lifted, but the sanctions upon Mugabe and his wife remain in place.

Moyo said: "Our position as Zanu-PF remains that all sanctions imposed on President Mugabe as head of state and citizen of Zimbabwe be removed unconditionally. Any effort to hoodwink the continent is futile."

Mugabe and his allies have long argued that Zimbabwe as a whole has been put under sanctions, saying that is the reason for the country's long-running economic problems.

Read more on:    zanu-pf  |  robert mugabe  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

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