WELLINGTON — Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai made a compelling case for suspending sanctions against his country, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key said after talks between the two yesterday.
Tsvangirai put the case for lifting financial and other sanctions in a meeting with Key during a visit to New Zealand, Radio New Zealand reported.
Tsvangirai told Key about the progress in Zimbabwe, where he has a power-sharing relationship with President Robert Mugabe.
Tsvangirai said it made sense to suspend sanctions pending free and fair elections, which he anticipated would happen within next year, according to the report.
Key said New Zealand could help with the elections and would seek advice on whether his country would lift or suspend the sanctions.
New Zealand imposed targeted bilateral sanctions on Zimbabwe in 2002 in protest at the Mugabe regime’s alleged human rights abuses.
Formerly a key opposition figure in Zimbabwean politics, Tsvangirai led his MDC in a power-sharing deal with Mugabe’s Zanu PF party in 2008.
Tsvangirai is the first member of the Zimbabwean government to formally visit New Zealand for more than a decade. – Global Times