Zimbabwe crisis: EU urges 'peaceful' resolution

2017-11-15 15:27
Military seen on Wednesday on a street in Zimbabwe. (Supplied)

Military seen on Wednesday on a street in Zimbabwe. (Supplied)

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Brussels - The European Union on Wednesday called for a "peaceful resolution" to the crisis in Zimbabwe, following military intervention which saw President Robert Mugabe, 93, placed under house arrest.

Mugabe's decades-long grip on power in Zimbabwe appeared to be weakening as military vehicles blocked roads around parliament, though generals have denied they are staging a coup.

"It is a matter of concern for the EU," European Commission spokesperson Catherine Ray said.

"We call on all the relevant players to move from confrontation to dialogue with the aim to a peaceful resolution," she told a daily briefing.

READ: Zimbabwe war vets group wants Mugabe recalled

"We are following very closely what is happening on the ground, underlining that the fundamental rights for the citizens need to be respected and the constitutional order and democratic governance to be upheld."

Mugabe and his wife Grace are on the European Union's sanctions blacklist targeting key figures in Zimbabwe's ruling elite with travel bans and asset freezes.

The EU first imposed sanctions against Zimbabwe in 2002 over its rights record.

Mugabe has called sanctions by the EU and United States "wrong" and last year blamed them for his government's failure to pay its workers on time, which led to a crippling strike.

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma, one of Mugabe's closest allies, said the veteran leader had told him by telephone that he was "confined to his home".

Tensions between Mugabe and the military establishment, which has long helped prop up his authoritarian rule, erupted in public over recent weeks.

LIVE: Follow News24's live updates on the unfolding situation in Zimbabwe

Reports indicate that soldiers have taken over Zimbabwe's ZBC state broadcaster, compounding speculation of a coup against President Robert Mugabe, 93. Follow Live updates.

Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa  |  politics

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