Zimbabwe’s Sanctions Standoff

TitelZimbabwe’s Sanctions Standoff
Typ der PublikationBook
Untertitel / SerientitelInternational Crisis Group Africa Briefing N°86
Anzahl Seiten16
VerlagInternational Crisis Group

Zimbabwe must hold elections before the end of June 2013, but the reforms needed to ensure appropriate conditions are critically wanting. The regional organisation – the Southern African Development Community (SADC) – calls for the removal of sanctions, claiming they are a serious political impediment to reform. Those who have imposed the measures – in particular, the European Union (EU) and the U.S. – argue the reform deficits justify their continuation, though they have been more symbolic than drivers of change. The sanctions gridlock now reflects the broader paralysis that characterises Zimbabwean politics. Opportunity for a calibrated, full removal of sanctions before the next elections, geared to broad progress on reform, such as perhaps existed three years ago when the Global Political Agreement (GPA) was fresh and the Inclusive Government formed, has probably passed. But a chance to promote progress and break the current deadlock still exists through a coordinated approach that distinguishes types of sanctions and focuses on specific reforms needed for those elections. It should be seized. The political situation is fragile, with growing fears the country may be heading toward new repression and conflict as the era dominated by the 88-year old President Robert Mugabe comes inevitably closer to an end, and elections draw nearer. Mugabe’s Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) claims the GPA and subsequent negotiated reform process have run their course, and conditions are conducive to a free and fair vote. The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) formations disagree but do not specify what they consider to be the minimum necessary reforms. SADC and most international observers believe the foundation for free and fair elections has not yet been laid. There has been some economic and social progress, but major deficits and deadlock persist on core reforms and implementation of some already agreed matters. Most significantly, ZANU-PF retains full control of the security apparatus, raising legitimate fears elections could lead to a repeat of the 2008 violence and refusal to accept the democratic will of the people. (from report's introduction) Download

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