Call To Extend Zimbabwe Sanctions

Peter Hain will claim that Robert Mugabe and associates are planning further election violence to keep the rival Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) from power, using money siphoned from the country’s “blood diamonds”.

The former cabinet minister will highlight a report by Global Witness which claims that Sam Pa, a Chinese businessman, has provided funding and equipment to Zimbabwe’s secret police in return for access to diamond deposits.

A spokesman for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said “there was no question” of lifting sanctions on Mugabe, 88, or anyone involved in continued human rights abuses. Western diplomats have said that conditions could be lifted on the president if certain conditions are met.

He said that while the body was “reflecting” on its policy towards Zimbabwe, following a call for sanctions to be lifted by the UN Human Rights Chief, regional mediator President Jacob Zuma and Mr Tsvangirai, the president of Zimbabwe would not be among those given a reprieve.