Saturday, January 03, 2009

(LUSAKATIMES) Libya donates tractors to boost food production

Libya donates tractors to boost food production
January 3, 2009

PRESIDENT Rupiah Banda after driving one of the tractors donated by the Libyan government. This was at State House during a hand over ceremony

Libya has given Zambia several tractors for boosting food production in the country.

Speaking at the occassion, Republican President Rupiah Banda said Zambia appreciates the friendship and brotherhood Libya has always extended to Zambia.

Mr. Banda observed that mechanized farming is key to addressing the challenges of food production in Zambia.

He said the country was currently in need of mechanical farming equipment such as tractors in order to address the challenges being faced as a result of the global financial credit crunch.

Mr. Banda also noted that government considers agriculture as one of the key alternatives to the mining sector following the fall in copper prices on the world market.

He said government is looking forward to receiving more mechanical agriculture equipment as earlier pointed out by the Libyan government to ensure the whole country benefits from the gesture.

Mr. Banda has since assured the Libyan government that the equipment will be well distributed around the country and be used for the intended purpose of boosting food

AGRICULTURE minister Brian Chituwo driving one of the tractors donated by the Libyan government
production in the country.

Among those that witnessed the official handover were Agriculture Minister Dr. Brian Chituwo, Presidential Affairs Minister Gabriel Namulambe and Special Political Advisor to the President Akashambatwa Mbikusita Lewanika.

Libyan Ambassador to Zambia Khalifa Omar Swiexi said the gesture is aimed at helping to develop the Zambian agricultural sector.

Mr. Swiexi said his country is committed to providing assistance to friendly countries like Zambia through the provision of mechanical equipment such as tractors and other agricultural equipment.

He said the gesture is also a symbol of the long standing relationship between the two countries for the purpose of establishing cooperation and the exploitation of the natural resources.

Mr. Swiexi who described the relations between the two countries as excellent expressed confidence that President Banda and his Libyan counterpart Colonel Muammar Gaddafi would continue to provide guidance in developing and enhancing the already existing relations between the two countries.

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(HERALD) Enough is enough, Tsvangirai

Enough is enough, Tsvangirai

IF ever there was anybody who doubted that MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai is a puppet in the mould of Moise Tshombe, those doubts should be dispelled by Tsvangirai’s behaviour in the wake of indications from the US State Department that Washington was ‘‘withdrawing support’’ for the envisaged inclusive Government.

As we report elsewhere in this issue, the MDC-T leader has written to President Mugabe, ostensibly, turning down the invitation to come for swearing in as Prime Minister, claiming he needs to ‘‘iron out’’ outstanding issues.

While Tsvangirai’s language may give the impression that he is leaving the door to the inclusive Government open on condition that his demands are met, all who are well-versed with his flip-flopping since the broad-based agreement was signed on September 15 last year, will agree that the man changes positions to match statements coming from Whitehall or the White House.

It is important to note that all along, Tsvangirai claimed he could not return home to be sworn in because he did not have a passport.

But now that the passport has been hand-delivered to him by the South African ambassador to Botswana, the man is singing a different tune. However, Tsvangirai’s latest charade comes as no surprise to us given statements made by the US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Jendayi Frazer, who announced that the US was ‘‘withdrawing support’’ for the inclusive Government.

The man’s recent pronouncements echo the US State Department position, even though regional leaders are agreed that the envisaged inclusive Government is long overdue.

What this means is that Tsvangirai has made it clear that he prioritises Western voices over African sentiment.

To this end, we urge President Mugabe to proceed with the formation of the envisaged inclusive Government regardless of whether Tsvangirai wants in or out.

For the Government to be inclusive, it does not mean it has to have Tsvangirai in it; the Government can be inclusive of people who want to be in it.

We reiterate even if Tsvangirai were to join Government; he would be difficult to work with as long as he dances to the puppeteer’s tune. To this end, we believe the nation and Government have been patient enough with this man, it’s high time we said enough is enough.

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(HERALD) MDC: Who really stands in the way of the inclusive Govt?

MDC: Who really stands in the way of the inclusive Govt?

The dogs of war are barking furious, less from a determination to bite, more from frustration that the script has failed — yet again. The link between facile Western journalism and war jingo, indeed the link between crass Eurocentric journalism and white wars abroad, seems never hidden.

Take the case of Martin Fletcher, a London Times media dog of war, personifying residual colonial reflexes. He comes into the country secretly as part of the empire’s war-canvassing, multi-skilled deployment. Once in, he claims a series of "harrowing" sights he reasons and believes make a good case for war, for an armed invasion of Zimbabwe to fulfil the international community’s "responsibility to protect".

One such image is that of an "an emaciated old woman making ‘soup’ from weeds for her orphaned grandchildren". It turns out Fletcher’s eyes had roved and rested on an old rural woman discharging filial and custodial duties by preparing family relish from wild okra, a relish found in abundance with the onset of the rains. While this is a staggering sight to our colonial booty-fed Fletcher, to us the indigenes, this is a typical sight for the season, regardless of how and by whom Zimbabwe is governed, indeed whether in fat or lean years.

With the early rains comes a verdurous explosion of all manner of wild vegetables we all turn to for lunch and/or supper. This abundance of greens cannot be a cause for war, surely.

Enormous errors from minnows

Another "harrowing" sight that moves our Fletcher to declaring war against Zimbabwe is that of "young men defying crocodiles to catch a handful of tiny fish in the Zambezi".

What to Fletcher passes for "tiny fish" is what to us indigenes is called matemba whose very unique selling point (usp) is precisely that same tiny size which this Fletcher turns into a part of an iconography of suffering in Zimbabwe. And, of course, the practice of catching matemba is as old as the Zambezi itself, and, what is worse, a big business for big white businesses, not least Sea Harvest, a company any serious British journalist would readily know.

Zimbabwe is renowned for matemba the same way Britain is well known for its hake, its crabs or its snails. I am sure a Zimbabwean African would find the sight of a battalion of Englishmen chasing poor foxes across an otherwise serene heath quite amenable to all sorts of interpretations, especially when read against myriad challenges created by the mad cow disease, both for butcheries and for mental soundness of Albion’s citizens.

Strange gastronomical pursuits of a people hardly point to poverty or desperation, let alone reason enough for aggression by another that thinks itself better situated, never mind by what ill-gotten means.

A short, easy war

I have cited this enormously ignorant English journalist to show the not-so-clever link between unmerited British aggression and celebrated British journalism.

What for us would-be victims of that aggression would pass for mundane, run-of-the-mill rural pursuits, are for this strange English sensibility causa belli, a cause for war. In case you think this sensibility is a fluke, I can refer you to yet another — one Sir Bernard Ingram — himself a curiously knighted, out-and-out churl who spoke for Margaret Thatcher in her political heyday. In a well-written, horrible piece, the hoary ex-journalist concludes: "If we are not prepared to remove him (President Mugabe), we should shut up."

He is venting frustration at the lack of spine within the British establishment for a toppling war which the impressionistic Fletcher says is not only doable, but long overdue since "the Mugabe regime, like a tree hollowed out by termites, is just waiting to be toppled". As with Eurocentric prognosis just before the invasion of Iraq, Fletcher sanguinely reads a dispirited, disloyal, unpatriotic defence force which "would melt away at the first sight of a foreign force".

"Any fighting would probably be over within hours, and the bloodshed would be minimal," concludes man Fletcher, apparently unhelped by experiences of two long wars that have bogged down his country’s army well over half a decade.

From State House, Harare!

It is this crass journalism, this inciting journalism, which is buoying Tsvangirai’s MDC here, making it corky and intransigent.

As I write, Tsvangirai appears to have requited President Mugabe’s invitation to him to join the inclusive Government through ringing impudence.

The man dares make demands, send ultimatums to President Mugabe, obviously misled by Zanu-PF’s series of concessions whose larger calculus he has not quite grasped.

Misled by Eddie Cross — an official statistic of bankruptcy — Tsvangirai thinks Zanu-PF is so weakened that he might end up walking to State House, unopposed, without conditions, unsharing. Even the way he addresses his official correspondence amply show building delusions of grandeur.

His latest letter to President Mugabe suggests it is posted from "State House, Harare"! And any apparent show of readiness for British aggression done on behalf of the overstretched British army by war merchants from newsrooms, real marginals who cannot tell gunpowder from cocaine, fortifies Tsvangirai’s obduracy, certain that whatever Mugabe does, he has the British maxim gun, which Mugabe does not have. Life teaches that however violent, however, loud, whatever degree of fragrance, a fart can never be a harmattan, let alone a monsoon.

The real spoilers

If you sit down with level-headed MDC-T functionaries, they are quick to register a sober appraisal of their leverage against Zanu-PF, eager to confess to their desire to speedily join the inclusive Government. Already carrying self-arrogated titles on their doubly bent backs, they are always anxious to tell the system who the spoilers of the party are, who the real owners of MDC are, where the system must read real signals on the direction and position of their formation.

Hardly a day passes without such indications, all of which converge on an inclusive Government by mid-January or early February. More surprisingly, they are quick to vent their frustration with individuals they think are standing in the way of "progress".

And the name of Tendai Biti keeps coming up, as does that of Mudzuri, both for very different reasons. Biti gets foremost blame, much of it attributed to his enormous ambition for a meaningful role both within MDC and in the proposed inclusive Government, both which translate to deep contempt for the MDC-T leadership as presently configured. He thinks Tsvangirai must submit to the party’s constitutional term limits, which would then mean his stepping-down this February.

To his credit, these voices in MDC say Biti has not implied his ambitions to step in and up to the zenith. He has said so openly and loudly, which is how he has triggered angst in the likes of Mudzuri, who think they have better composure for such a leadership opportunity. This angst has triggered very interesting restlessness and speculations, including the possibility of an alliance between the Mudzuri group and Tavengwa’s Zapu.

Should this turn out to be true, it would be the first time that Tavengwa, a.k.a. Dabengwa, would have reclaimed and utilised his Karanga roots, roots long self-denied.

For MDC, for inclusive Govt

Within the proposed inclusive Government, Biti cannot understand why the MDC-T formation has decided the bottom is the better part of leadership, instead of the head.

He cannot understand why Tsvangirai preferred Khupe to him, arguing the symbolism of tribal balance has been too big a price for the MDC to pay.

His ambitions feel killed by symbolism. Cleverly, he pulls sound legal arguments on why MDC-T cannot join the inclusive Government on present terms, in the process reinforcing the self-sought perception as the sole guardian for best deal for the party.

At once the argument blocks progress on the formation of the inclusive Government while at the same time confirming his credentials for topmost leadership.

And grant it to him, no one in MDC appears able to counter Biti intelligently. Of course, these voices will also tell you about pressure for real gains by the grassroots who now accuse the MDC-T leadership of cutting best deals for itself with Zanu-PF.

Yet the real stumbling block

Interestingly, no one in MDC is too keen to play up the external straitjacket represented by Britain, America, Sweden and other European powers who view MDC-T as a political tool for the realisation of their larger geo-strategic goals in Southern Africa.

I have just cited war arguments purveyed

by British journalists — themselves war’s prologue – for the invasion of Zimbabwe. Increasingly, this thrust sidelines MDC as the visible actor for more direct action by imperial powers.

We have seen in the intervening weeks the inexorable sidelining of MDC as direct actors in Zimbabwe’s political drama. Britain must now lead, supported by America and Europe, legitimised by an African force. MDC-T is there as proof that Zimbabwe now has a credible alternative to Zanu-PF, an argument Britain pushes without any sense of irony.

Surely if Zimbabwe had that alternative, why would this require an invasion? The people will always install an alternative they need, whether by ballot or by bullet! The trouble is the British have been battling to whittle down President Mugabe’s social base, but with little success.

This is why the man has to be dislodged through war. Except the British have not realised that the new year will yield an equally determined Robert Mugabe, one quite fed up with Tsvangirai’s antics, and thus ready to take the mighty bull by the horns. We will have a substantive Government quite early in the year, with or without Tsvangirai.

He could just save himself and his party by going down this one path: that of Zimbabwe, away from his benefactors for so long. Will he?



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(HERALD) Tsvangirai turns down Govt’s invitation

Tsvangirai turns down Govt’s invitation
By Mabasa Sasa and Takunda Maodza

MDC-T LEADER Mr Morgan Tsvangirai has turned down President Mugabe’s invitation to return to Zimbabwe and be sworn in as Prime Minister in accordance with the September 15 broad-based agreement signed between Zanu-PF, MDC-T and MDC.

According to a letter Mr Tsvangirai wrote to President Mugabe on December 29, 2008 and published by the Post newspaper of Zambia on New Year’s Day, the opposition leader claimed further negotiations were still required.

The letter was left at Zimbabwe’s Embassy in Botswana by a "source who refused to identify himself".

Mr Tsvangirai’s letter comes at a time when the US State Department has announced that it was opposed to the envisaged inclusive Government.

US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer announced on December 21 that the US was ‘‘withdrawing support for the inclusive Government.’’

Despite Tsvangirai’s letter, The Herald is reliably informed that Zanu-PF and MDC are moving ahead with finalising the formation of the envisaged inclusive Government.

A senior Government official confirmed that President Mugabe and MDC leader Professor Arthur Mutambara met on Wednesday to map the way forward in the formation of the inclusive Government regardless of Mr Tsvangirai’s letter.

In his letter, which was leaked to the Post by Botswana Government officials earlier this week and has since been seen by The Herald, Mr Tsvangirai said he was not prepared to finalise the agreement.

Mr Tsvangirai said he wanted another meeting between himself and President Mugabe in the presence of South African President and Sadc Chair Cde Kgalema Motlanthe.

"I acknowledge receipt of a copy of your letter dated 17 December 2008 and my passport, delivered to me on Christmas Day by the South African High Commissioner to Botswana, Mr Dikgang Moopeloa.

"You are aware that the MDC, through its council resolution, justifiably rejected the recommendation of Sadc, and that the position regarding fundamental issues of principle have not yet been resolved. It is, therefore, presumptuous to conclude that the MDC accepts the allocation of ministers as per the schedule that you unilaterally gazetted.

"When the Constitution Amendment No. 19 Bill has been passed into law, the roles of President and Prime Minister will then stand properly defined within the law. Otherwise there is no basis for appointments. In the absence of the above processes, I find your proposal to appoint me Prime Minister irregular.

"I have written in the same vein to President Motlanthe suggesting he convenes a confidential meeting in South Africa between you and me, under his chairmanship, so that we can iron out these matters to the satisfaction of all parties.

"I am sure you are anxious to proceed to the successful implementation of the Global Political Agreement, anxiety that I share, but the issues are so profound that we must act in a logical sequence.

"In the meantime, I hope that when Parliament convenes on the 20 January, 2009, all parties will support the text of the Bill in accordance with the agreement," part of the letter read.

This was the first time that the opposition openly admitted that Mr Tsvangirai had been formally invited to take the post of Prime Minister after previously giving the impression that President Mugabe was lying when he told delegates to Zanu-PF’s recent annual conference in Bindura that letters of invitation had been sent to the two MDCs.

Interestingly, though the letter was delivered to Zimbabwe’s Embassy in Gaborone, the letterhead read "State House, Harare".

Government sources said they found it strange and suggested that perhaps it had been authored at Botswana’s State House using President Seretse Khama Ian Khama’s official stationery but the opposition had botched up in covering up the fact.

Analysts have also pointed out that Mr Tsvangirai’s appointment does not immediately require the enactment of the constitutional amendment.

According to the Constitution, President Mugabe can appoint a person outside Parliament to a ministerial position on condition that the individual finds a seat in the House of Assembly or Senate within 90 days of the appointment.

This, the analysts said, demonstrated that Mr Tsvangirai was looking for excuses to sabotage the inclusive Government in light of indications by the US and other Western countries that they would not support the envisaged inclusive Government

President Mugabe’s spokesperson Cde George Charamba was quoted by the Post as saying: "To understand Tsvangirai’s position on the invitation to join the inclusive Government, watch Jendayi Frazer’s lips."

Frazer recently said the US would not back any Government that included President Mugabe.

This is despite the agreement between Zanu-PF, MDC-T and MDC — and signed by Mr Tsvangirai — recognising President Mugabe as Head of State and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces as well as Chair of Cabinet and the National Security Council.

While this was happening, the leaders of the other two parties to the agreement held a meeting.

Cde Charamba yesterday confirmed that the Zimbabwean leader met Prof Mutambara on Wednesday but could not provide details.

MDC secretary general Professor Welshman Ncube also confirmed the meeting in an interview with The Herald.

"They met on December 31 in response to a letter written to our president (Prof Mutambara) by President Mugabe asking for nominations," he said. "They agreed that they needed to find a formula to make sure the three principals meet."

He would not say when the three party leaders would meet.

Mr Tsvangirai is still holed up in Botswana despite receiving his passport.

Before he was issued with a passport, Mr Tsvangirai cited the absence of a travelling document as his reason for not coming back home.

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(TALKZIMBABWE) Agreement between Zanu PF and the two MDCs

Agreement between Zanu PF and the two MDCs
Fri, 02 Jan 2009 14:17:00 +0000

BELOW is the full text of the agreement between the two formations of the Movement for Democratic Change and Zanu PF.



We, the Parties to this Agreement;

CONCERNED about the recent challenges that we have faced as a country and the multiple threats to the well-being of our people and, therefore, determined to resolve these permanently.

CONSIDERING our shared determination to uphold, defend and sustain Zimbabwe's sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity, as a respected member of the international community, a nation where all citizens respect and, therefore, enjoy equal protection of the law and have equal opportunity to compete and prosper in all spheres of life.

ACKNOWLEDGING the sacrifices made by thousands of Zimbabwe's gallant sons and daughters in the fight against colonialism and racial discrimination and determined to accept, cherish and recognise the significance of the Liberation Struggle as the foundation of our sovereign independence, freedoms and human rights.

DEDICATING ourselves to putting an end to the polarisation, divisions, conflict and intolerance that has characterised Zimbabwean politics and society in recent times.

COMMITTING ourselves to putting our people and our country first by arresting the fall in living standards and reversing the decline of our economy.

EMPHASISING our shared commitment to re-orient our attitudes towards respect for the Constitution and all national laws, the rule of law, observance of Zimbabwe's national institutions, symbols and national events.

RESPECTING the rights of all Zimbabweans regardless of political affiliation to benefit from and participate in all national programmes and events freely without let or hindrance.

RECOGNISING, accepting and acknowledging that the values of justice, fairness, openness, tolerance, equality, non-discrimination and respect of all persons without regard to race, class, gender, ethnicity, language, religion, political opinion, place of origin or birth are the bedrock of our democracy and good governance.

DETERMINED to build a society free of violence, fear, intimidation, hatred, patronage, corruption and founded on justice, fairness, openness, transparency, dignity and equality.

RECOGNISING and accepting that the Land Question has been at the core of the contestation in Zimbabwe and acknowledging the centrality of issues relating to the rule of law, respect for human rights, democracy and governance.

COMMITTED to act in a manner that demonstrates loyalty to Zimbabwe, patriotism and commitment to Zimbabwe's national purpose, core values, interests and aspirations.

DETERMINED to act in a manner that demonstrates respect for the democratic values of justice, fairness, openness, tolerance, equality, respect of all persons and human rights.

SUBMITTING ourselves to the mandate of the Extraordinary Summit of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) held in Dar-es-Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania, on 29th March 2007 and endorsed in Lusaka on 12th April 2008 and in the AU Summit held in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt from 30th June to 1 July 2008.

RECOGNISING the centrality and importance of African institutions in dealing with African problems, we agreed to seek solutions to our differences, challenges and problems through dialogue.

ACKNOWLEDGING that pursuant to the Dar-es-Salaam SADC resolution, the Parties negotiated and agreed on a draft Constitution, initialed by the Parties on 30 September 2007, and further agreed and co-sponsored the enactment of the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment Number 18 Act, amendments to the Electoral Act, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission Act, Public Order and Security Act, Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act and Broadcasting Services Act.

APPRECIATING the historical obligation and need to reach a solution that will allow us to put Zimbabwe first and give the people a genuine chance of rebuilding and reconstructing their livelihoods.

PURSUANT to the common desire of working together, the Parties agreed to and executed a Memorandum of Understanding on 21 July 2008, attached hereto as Annexure "A".




1. Definitions

The "Agreement" shall mean this written Agreement signed by the representatives of ZANU-PF and the MDC, in its two formations ("the Parties") in fulfillment of the material mandate handed down by the SADC Extraordinary Summit on 29th March 2007 and endorsed by SADC in Lusaka, Zambia and adopted by the African Union Summit in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.

The "Parties" shall mean ZANU-PF, the two MDC formations led by Morgan Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara respectively.

The "Government" or "New Government" means the new Government to be set up in terms of this Agreement.



2. Declaration of Commitment The Parties hereby declare and agree to work together to create a genuine, viable, permanent, sustainable and nationally acceptable solution to the Zimbabwe situation and in particular to implement the following agreement with the aims of resolving once and for all the current political and economic situations and charting a new political direction for the country.



3. Economic recovery

3.1 The Parties agree:

(a) to give priority to the restoration of economic stability and growth in Zimbabwe. The Government will lead the process of developing and implementing an economic recovery strategy and plan. To that end, the parties are committed to working together on a full and comprehensive economic programme to resuscitate Zimbabwe's economy, which will urgently address the issues of production, food security, poverty and unemployment and the challenges of high inflation, interest rates and the exchange rate.

(b) to create conditions that would ensure that the 2008/2009 agricultural season is productive.

(c) to establish a National Economic Council, composed of representatives of the Parties and of the following sectors:

(i) Manufacturing
(ii) Agriculture
(iii) Mining
(iv) Tourism
(v) Commerce
(vi) Financial
(vii) Labour
(viii) Academia; and
(ix) Other relevant sectors

(d) that the terms of reference of the Council shall include giving advice to Government, formulating economic plans and programmes for approval by government and such other functions as are assigned to the Council by the Government.

(e) to endorse the SADC resolution on the economy.



4. Sanctions and Measures

4.1 Recognising and acknowledging that some sections of the international community have since 2000 imposed various sanctions and measures against Zimbabwe, which have included targeted sanctions.

4.2 The Parties note the present economic and political isolation of Zimbabwe by the United Kingdom, European Union, United States of America and other sections of the International Community over and around issues of disputed elections, governance and differences over the land reform programme.

4.3 Noting and acknowledging the following sanctions and measures imposed on Zimbabwe:-
(a) enactment of the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act by the United States of America Congress which outlaws Zimbabwe's right to access credit from International Financial Institutions in which the United States Government is represented or has a stake;
(b) suspension of Zimbabwe's voting and related rights, suspension of balance of payment support, declaration of ineligibility to borrow Fund resources and suspension of technical assistance to Zimbabwe by the International Monetary Fund;
(c) suspension of grants and infrastructural development support to Zimbabwe by The World Bank; and
(d) imposition of targeted travel bans against current Government and some business leaders.

4.4 Noting that this international isolation has over the years created a negative international perception of Zimbabwe and thereby resulting in the further isolation of the country by the non-availing of lines of credit to Zimbabwe by some sections of the international community.
4.5 Recognising the consequent contribution of this isolation to the further decline of the economy.

4.6 Desirous and committed to bringing to an end the fall in the standards of living of our people, the Parties hereby agree:-
(a) to endorse the SADC resolution on sanctions concerning Zimbabwe;
(b) that all forms of measures and sanctions against Zimbabwe be lifted in order to facilitate a sustainable solution to the challenges that are currently facing Zimbabwe; and
(c) commit themselves to working together in re-engaging the international community with a view to bringing to an end the country's international isolation.


5. Land Question

5.1 Recognising that colonial racist land ownership patterns established during the colonial conquest of Zimbabwe and largely maintained in the post independence period were not only unsustainable, but against the national interest, equity and justice.

5.2 Noting that in addition to the primary objective of the liberation struggle to win one man one vote democracy and justice, the land question, namely the need for the re-distribution of land to the majority indigenous people of Zimbabwe was at the core of the liberation struggle.

5.3 Accepting the inevitability and desirability of a comprehensive land reform programme in Zimbabwe that redresses the issues of historical imbalances and injustices in order to address the issues of equity, productivity, and justice.

5.4 While differing on the methodology of acquisition and redistribution the parties acknowledge that compulsory acquisition and redistribution of land has taken place under a land reform programme undertaken since 2000.

5.5 Accepting the irreversibility of the said land acquisitions and redistribution.

5.6 Noting that in the current Constitution of Zimbabwe and further in the Draft Constitution agreed to by the parties the primary obligation of compensating former land owners for land acquired rests on the former colonial power.

5.7 Further recognising the need to ensure that all land is used productively in the interests of all the people of Zimbabwe.

5.8 Recognising the need for women's access and control over land in their own right as equal citizens.

5.9 The Parties hereby agree to:

(a) conduct a comprehensive, transparent and non-partisan land audit, during the tenure of the Seventh Parliament of Zimbabwe, for the purpose of establishing accountability and eliminating multiple farm ownerships.
(b) ensure that all Zimbabweans who are eligible to be allocated land and who apply for it shall be considered for allocation of land irrespective of race, gender, religion, ethnicity or political affiliation;
(c) ensure security of tenure to all land holders.
(d) call upon the United Kingdom government to accept the primary responsibility to pay compensation for land acquired from former land owners for resettlement;
(e) work together to secure international support and finance for the land reform programme in terms of compensation for the former land owners and support for new farmers; and
(f) work together for the restoration of full productivity on all agricultural land.


6. Constitution

Acknowledging that it is the fundamental right and duty of the Zimbabwean people to make a constitution by themselves and for themselves;

Aware that the process of making this constitution must be owned and driven by the people and must be inclusive and democratic;

Recognising that the current Constitution of Zimbabwe made at the Lancaster House Conference, London (1979) was primarily to transfer power from the colonial authority to the people of Zimbabwe;

Acknowledging the draft Constitution that the Parties signed and agreed to in Kariba on the 30th of September 2007, annexed hereto as Annexure "B";

Determined to create conditions for our people to write a constitution for themselves; and

Mindful of the need to ensure that the new Constitution deepens our democratic values and principles and the protection of the equality of all citizens, particularly the enhancement of full citizenship and equality of women.

6.1 The Parties hereby agree:
(a) that they shall set up a Select Committee of Parliament composed of representatives of the Parties whose terms of reference shall be as follows:
(i) to set up such subcommittees chaired by a member of Parliament and composed of members of Parliament and representatives of Civil Society as may be necessary to assist the Select Committee in performing its mandate herein;
(ii) to hold such public hearings and such consultations as it may deem necessary in the process of public consultation over the making of a new constitution for Zimbabwe;
(iii) to convene an All Stakeholders Conference to consult stakeholders on their representation in the sub-committees referred to above and such related matters as may assist the committee in its work;
(iv) to table its draft Constitution to a 2nd All Stakeholders Conference; and
(v) to report to Parliament on its recommendations over the content of a New Constitution for Zimbabwe
(b) that the draft Constitution recommended by the Select Committee shall be submitted to a referendum;
(c) that, in implementing the above, the following time frames shall apply:
(i) the Select Committee shall be set up within two months of inception of a new government;
(ii) the convening of the first All Stakeholders Conference shall be within 3 months of the date of the appointment of the Select Committee;
(iii) the public consultation process shall be completed no later than 4 months of the date of the first All Stakeholders Conference;
(iv) the draft Constitution shall be tabled within 3 months of completion of the public consultation process to a second All Stakeholders Conference;
(v) the draft Constitution and the accompanying Report shall be tabled before Parliament within 1 month of the second All Stakeholders Conference;
(vi) the draft Constitution and the accompanying Report shall be debated in Parliament and the debate concluded within one month;
(vii) the draft Constitution emerging from Parliament shall be gazetted before the holding of a referendum;
(viii) a referendum on the new draft Constitution shall be held within 3 months of the conclusion of the debate;
(ix) in the event of the draft Constitution being approved in the referendum it shall be gazetted within 1 month of the date of the referendum; and
(x) the draft Constitution shall be introduced in Parliament no later than 1 month after the expiration of the period of 30 days from the date of its gazetting.



7. Equality, National Healing, Cohesion and Unity

7.1 The Parties hereby agree that the new Government:
a) will ensure equal treatment of all regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, place of origin and will work towards equal access to development for all;
b) will ensure equal and fair development of all regions of the country and in particular to correct historical imbalances in the development of regions;
c) shall give consideration to the setting up of a mechanism to properly advise on what measures might be necessary and practicable to achieve national healing, cohesion and unity in respect of victims of pre and post independence political conflicts; and
d) will strive to create an environment of tolerance and respect among Zimbabweans and that all citizens are treated with dignity and decency irrespective of age, gender, race, ethnicity, place of origin or political affiliation.
e) will formulate policies and put measures in place to attract the return and repatriation of all Zimbabweans in the Diaspora and in particular will work towards the return of all skilled personnel.


8. Respect for National Institutions and Events

8.1 In the interests of forging a common vision for our country, the Parties hereby agree:- (a) on the necessity of all Zimbabweans regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, political affiliation and religion to respect and observe Zimbabwe's national institutions, symbols, national programmes and events; and
(b) that all Zimbabweans regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, political affiliation and religion have the right to benefit from and participate in all national programmes and events without let or hindrance.



9. External Interference
9.1 The Parties reaffirm the principle of the United Nations Charter on non-interference in the internal affairs of member countries.

9.2 The Parties hereby agree:-
(a) that the responsibility of effecting change of government in Zimbabwe vests exclusively on and is the sole prerogative of the people of Zimbabwe through peaceful, democratic and constitutional means;
(b) to reject any unlawful, violent, undemocratic and unconstitutional means of changing governments; and
(c) that no outsiders have a right to call or campaign for regime change in Zimbabwe.



10. Free political activity Recognising that the right to canvass and freely mobilise for political support is the cornerstone of any multi-party democratic system, the Parties have agreed that there should be free political activity throughout Zimbabwe within the ambit of the law in which all political parties are able to propagate their views and canvass for support, free of harassment and intimidation.



11. Rule of law, respect for the Constitution and other laws
11.1 The Parties hereby agree that it is the duty of all political parties and individuals to:
(a) respect and uphold the Constitution and other laws of the land;
(b) adhere to the principles of the Rule of Law.


12. Freedoms of Assembly and Association

12.1 Recognising the importance of the freedoms of assembly and association in a multi-party democracy and noting that public meetings have to be conducted in a free, peaceful and democratic manner in accordance with the law, the Parties have agreed:-
(a) to work together in a manner which guarantees the full implementation and realisation of the right to freedom of association and assembly; and
(b) that the Government shall undertake training programmes, workshops and meetings for the police and other enforcement agencies directed at the appreciation of the right of freedom of assembly and association and the proper interpretation, understanding and application of the provisions of security legislation.


13. State organs and institutions

13.1 State organs and institutions do not belong to any political party and should be impartial in the discharge of their duties.

13.2 For the purposes of ensuring that all state organs and institutions perform their duties ethically and professionally in conformity with the principles and requirements of a multi-party democratic system in which all parties are treated equally, the Parties have agreed that the following steps be taken:-
(a) that there be inclusion in the training curriculum of members of the uniformed forces of the subjects on human rights, international humanitarian law and statute law so that there is greater understanding and full appreciation of their roles and duties in a multi-party democratic system;
(b) ensuring that all state organs and institutions strictly observe the principles of the Rule of Law and remain non-partisan and impartial;
(c) laws and regulations governing state organs and institutions are strictly adhered to and those violating them be penalised without fear or favour; and
(d) recruitment policies and practices be conducted in a manner that ensures that no political or other form of favouritism is practised.



14. Traditional Leaders

14.1 Recognising and acknowledging that traditional leaders are community leaders with equal responsibilities and obligations to all members of their communities regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, race, religion and political affiliation, the Parties hereby agree to:-
(a) commit themselves to ensuring the political neutrality of traditional leaders; and
(b) call upon traditional leaders not to engage in partisan political activities at national level as well as in their communities.


15. National Youth Training Programme

Recognising the desirability of a national youth training programme which inculcates the values of patriotism, discipline, tolerance, non-violence, openness, democracy, equality, justice and respect.

Determined to ensure that the National Youth Training Programme raises awareness of the HIV and AIDS pandemic, engenders a spirit of community service, skills development and a commitment to the development of Zimbabwe

15.1 The Parties hereby agree that:- (a) all youths regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, religion and political affiliation are eligible to participate in national youth training programmes;
(b) the National Youth Training Programme must be run in a non-partisan manner and shall not include partisan political material advancing the cause of any political party; and
(c) while recognising that youths undergoing training at national youth training centres have a right to hold political opinions, they shall not, during the period of their training, collectively and as part of a scheme of the training centre be used or deployed for partisan political work.



16. Humanitarian and food assistance

16.1 In times of need, every Zimbabwean regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, political affiliation and religion is entitled to request and receive humanitarian and food assistance from the State.

16.2 It is the primary responsibility of the State to ensure that every Zimbabwean who needs humanitarian and food assistance receives it.

16.3 Non-Governmental Organisations involved in giving humanitarian and food assistance shall do so without discrimination on the grounds of race, ethnicity, gender, political affiliation and religion and in doing so, shall not promote or advance the interests of any political party or cause.

16.4 In this regard the Parties hereby agree: (a) that in the fulfillment of its obligations above, the Government and all State Institutions and quasi State Institutions shall render humanitarian and food assistance without discrimination on the grounds of race, ethnicity, gender, political affiliation or religion;
(b) that humanitarian interventions rendered by Non-Governmental Organisations, shall be provided without discrimination on the grounds of race, ethnicity, gender, political affiliation and religion.

(c) that all displaced persons shall be entitled to humanitarian and food assistance to enable them to return and settle in their original homes and that social welfare organisations shall be allowed to render such assistance as might be required.
(d) that all NGO`s rendering humanitarian and food assistance must operate within the confines of the laws of Zimbabwe.



17. Legislative agenda
17.1 The Parties hereby agree that: (a) the legislative agenda will be prioritized in order to reflect the letter and spirit of this agreement;
(b) the Government will discuss and agree on further legislative measures which may become necessary to implement the Government's agreed policies and in particular, with a view to entrenching democratic values and practices.



18. Security of persons and prevention of violence
18.1 Noting the easy resort to violence by political parties, State actors, Non-State actors and others in order to resolve political differences and achieve political ends.

18.2 Gravely concerned by the displacement of scores of people after the election of March 29, 2008 as a result of politically motivated violence.

18.3 Recognising that violence dehumanises and engenders feelings of hatred and polarisation within the country.

18.4 Further recognising that violence undermines our collective independence as a people and our capacity to exercise our free will in making political choices.

18.5 The Parties hereby agree: (a) to promote the values and practices of tolerance, respect, non-violence and dialogue as means of resolving political differences;

(b) to renounce and desist from the promotion and use of violence, under whatever name called, as a means of attaining political ends;

(c) that the Government shall apply the laws of the country fully and impartially in bringing all perpetrators of politically motivated violence to book;

(d) that all political parties, other organisations and their leaders shall commit themselves to do everything to stop and prevent all forms of political violence, including by non-State actors and shall consistently appeal to their members to desist from violence;

(e) to take all measures necessary to ensure that the structures and institutions they control are not engaged in the perpetration of violence.

(f) that all civil society organisations of whatever description whether affiliated to a political party or not shall not promote or advocate for or use violence or any other form of intimidation or coercion to canvass or mobilise for or oppose any political party or to achieve any political end;

(g) to work together to ensure the security of all persons and property;

(h) to work together to ensure the safety of any displaced persons, their safe return home and their enjoyment of the full protection of the law.

(i) to refrain from using abusive language that may incite hostility, political intolerance and ethnic hatred or unfairly undermine each other.

(j) that while having due regard to the Constitution of Zimbabwe and the principles of the rule of law, the prosecuting authorities will expedite the determination as to whether or not there is sufficient evidence to warrant the prosecution or keeping on remand of all persons accused of politically related offences arising out of or connected with the March and June 2008 elections.



19. Freedom of Expression and Communication

Recognising the importance of the right to freedom of expression and the role of the media in a multi-party democracy.

Noting that while the provisions of the Broadcasting Services Act permit the issuance of licences, no licences other than to the public broadcaster have been issued.

Aware of the emergence of foreign based radio stations broadcasting into Zimbabwe, some of which are funded by foreign governments.

Concerned that the failure to issue licences under the Broadcasting Services Act to alternative broadcasters might have given rise to external radio stations broadcasting into Zimbabwe.

Further concerned that foreign government funded external radio stations broadcasting into Zimbabwe are not in Zimbabwe's national interest.

Desirous of ensuring the opening up of the air waves and ensuring the operation of as many media houses as possible.

19.1 The Parties hereby agree:- (a) that the government shall ensure the immediate processing by the appropriate authorities of all applications for re-registration and registration in terms of both the Broadcasting Services Act as well as the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act;

(b) all Zimbabwean nationals including those currently working for or running external radio stations be encouraged to make applications for broadcasting licences, in Zimbabwe, in terms of the law;

(c) that in recognition of the open media environment anticipated by this Agreement, the Parties hereby:-
(i) call upon the governments that are hosting and/or funding external radio stations broadcasting into Zimbabwe to cease such hosting and funding; and
(ii) encourage the Zimbabweans running or working for external radio stations broadcasting into Zimbabwe to return to Zimbabwe; and

(d) that steps be taken to ensure that the public media provides balanced and fair coverage to all political parties for their legitimate political activities.

(e) that the public and private media shall refrain from using abusive language that may incite hostility, political intolerance and ethnic hatred or that unfairly undermines political parties and other organisations. To this end, the inclusive government shall ensure that appropriate measures are taken to achieve this objective.



20. Framework for a new Government

Acknowledging that we have an obligation to establish a framework of working together in an inclusive government;

Accepting that the formation of such a government will have to be approached with great sensitivity, flexibility and willingness to compromise;

Recognising that the formation of such a Government would demonstrate the respect of the Parties for the deeply-felt and immediate hopes and aspirations of the millions of our people.

Determined to carry out sustained work to create the conditions for returning our country to stability and prosperity;

Acknowledging the need for gender parity, particularly the need to appoint women to strategic Cabinet posts;

20.1 The Parties hereby agree that:

20.1.1 Executive Powers and Authority

The Executive Authority of the Inclusive Government shall vest in, and be shared among the President, the Prime Minister and the Cabinet, as provided for in this Constitution and legislation.

The President of the Republic shall exercise executive authority subject to the Constitution and the law.

The Prime Minister of the Republic shall exercise executive authority subject to the Constitution and the law.

The Cabinet of the Republic shall exercise executive authority subject to the Constitution and the law.

In the exercise of executive authority, the President, Vice Presidents, the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Ministers, Ministers and Deputy Ministers must have regard to the principles and spirit underlying the formation of the Inclusive Government and accordingly act in a manner that seeks to promote cohesion both inside and outside government.

20.1.2 The Cabinet

(a) shall have the responsibility to evaluate and adopt all government policies and the consequential programmes;

(b) shall, subject to approval by Parliament, allocate the financial resources for the implementation of such policies and programmes;

(c) shall have the responsibility to prepare and present to Parliament, all such legislation and other instruments as may be necessary to implement the policies and programmes of the National Executive;

(d) shall, except where the Constitution requires ratification by Parliament, or action by the President, approve all international agreements;

(e) shall ensure that the state organs, including the Ministries and Departments, have sufficient financial and other resources and appropriate operational capacity to carry out their functions effectively; and

(f) shall take decisions by consensus, and take collective responsibility for all Cabinet decisions, including those originally initiated individually by any member of Cabinet.

(g) The President and the Prime Minister will agree on the allocation of Ministries between them for the purpose of day-to-day supervision.

20.1.3 The President

(a) chairs Cabinet;

(b) exercises executive authority;

(c) shall exercise his/her powers subject to the provisions of the Constitution;

(d) can, subject to the Constitution, declare war and make peace;

(e) can, subject to the Constitution, proclaim and terminate martial law;

(f) confers honours and precedence, on the advice of Cabinet;

(g) grants pardons, respites, substitutes less severe punishment and suspends or remits sentences, on the advice of Cabinet;

(h) chairs the National Security Council;

(i) formally appoints the Vice Presidents;

(j) shall, pursuant to this Agreement, appoint the Prime Minister pending the enactment of the Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment no.19 as agreed by the Parties;

(k) formally appoints Deputy Prime Ministers, Ministers and Deputy Ministers in accordance with this agreement;

(l) after consultation with the Vice Presidents, the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Ministers, allocates Ministerial portfolios in accordance with this Agreement;

(m) accredits, receives and recognizes diplomatic agents and consular officers;

(n) appoints independent Constitutional Commissions in terms of the Constitution;

(o) appoints service/executive Commissions in terms of the Constitution and in consultation with the Prime Minister;

(p) in consultation with the Prime Minister, makes key appointments the President is required to make under and in terms of the Constitution or any Act of Parliament;

(q) may, acting in consultation with the Prime Minister, dissolve Parliament;

(r) must be kept fully informed by the Prime Minister on the general conduct of the government business and;

(s) shall be furnished with such information as he/she may request in respect of any particular matter relating to the government, and may advise the Prime Minister and Cabinet in this regard.

20.1.4 The Prime Minister

(a) chairs the Council of Ministers and is the Deputy Chairperson of Cabinet;

(b) exercises executive authority;

(c) shall oversee the formulation of government policies by the Cabinet;

(d) shall ensure that the policies so formulated are implemented by the entirety of government;

(e) shall ensure that the Ministers develop appropriate implementation plans to give effect to the policies decided by Cabinet: in this regard, the Ministers will report to the Prime Minister on all issues relating to the implementation of such policies and plans;

(f) shall ensure that the legislation necessary to enable the government to carry out its functions is in place: in this regard, he/she shall have the responsibility to discharge the functions of the Leader of Government Business in Parliament;

(g) shall be a member of the National Security Council;

(h ) may be assigned such additional functions as are necessary further to enhance the work of the Inclusive Government;

(i) shall, to ensure the effective execution of these tasks, be assisted by Deputy Prime Ministers; and

(j) shall report regularly to the President and Parliament.

20.1.5 Council of Ministers

To ensure that the Prime Minister properly discharges his responsibility to oversee the implementation of the work of government, there shall be a Council of Ministers consisting of all the Cabinet Ministers, chaired by the Prime Minister, whose functions shall be:

(a) to assess the implementation of Cabinet decisions;

(b) to assist the Prime Minister to attend to matters of coordination in the government;

(c) to enable the Prime Minister to receive briefings from the Cabinet Committees;

(d) to make progress reports to Cabinet on matters of implementation of Cabinet decisions;

(e) to receive and consider reports from the Committee responsible for the periodic review mechanism; and

(f) to make progress reports to Cabinet on matters related to the periodic review mechanism.

20.1.6 Composition of the Executive

(1) There shall be a President, which Office shall continue to be occupied by President Robert Gabriel Mugabe.

(2) There shall be two (2) Vice Presidents, who will be nominated by the President and/or Zanu-PF.

(3) There shall be a Prime Minister, which Office shall be occupied by Mr Morgan Tsvangirai.

(4) There shall be two (2) Deputy Prime Ministers, one (1) from MDC-T and one (1) from the MDC-M.

(5) There shall be thirty-one (31) Ministers, with fifteen (15) nominated by ZANU PF, thirteen (13) by MDC-T and three (3) by MDC-M. Of the 31 Ministers, three (3) one each per Party, may be appointed from outside the members of Parliament. The three (3) Ministers so appointed shall become members of the House of Assembly and shall have the right to sit, speak and debate in Parliament, but shall not be entitled to vote.

(6) There shall be fifteen (15) Deputy Ministers, with (eight) 8 nominated by ZANU PF, six (6) by MDC-T and one (1) by MDC-M.

(7) Ministers and Deputy Ministers may be relieved of their duties only after consultation among the leaders of all the political parties participating in the Inclusive Government.

20.1.7 Senate

(a) The President shall, in his discretion, appoint five (5) persons to the existing positions of Presidential senatorial appointments.

(b) There shall be created an additional nine (9) appointed senatorial posts, which shall be filled by persons appointed by the President, of whom, 3 will be nominated by ZANU-PF, 3 by MDC-T and 3 by MDC-M.

20.1.8 Filling of vacancies

(a) In the event of any vacancy arising in respect of posts referred to in clauses 20.1.6 and 20.1.7(b) above, such vacancy shall be filled by a nominee of the Party which held that position prior to the vacancy arising.



21. Electoral Vacancies

Aware of the divisive and often times confrontational nature of elections and by elections;

Noting the need to allow this agreement to take root amongst the parties and people of Zimbabwe; and

Cognisant of the need to give our people some breathing space and a healing period;

21.1 The Parties hereby agree that for a period of 12 months from the date of signing of this agreement, should any electoral vacancy arise in respect of a local authority or parliamentary seat, for whatever reason, only the party holding that seat prior to the vacancy occurring shall be entitled to nominate and field a candidate to fill the seat subject to that party complying with the rules governing its internal democracy.



22. Implementation mechanisms

22.1 To ensure full and proper implementation of the letter and spirit of this Agreement, the Parties hereby constitute a Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee ("JOMIC") to be composed of four senior members from ZANU-PF and four senior members from each of the two MDC Formations. Gender consideration must be taken into account in relation to the composition of JOMIC.

22.2 The committee shall be co-chaired by persons from the Parties.

22.3 The committee shall have the following functions:-

(a) to ensure the implementation in letter and spirit of this Agreement;

(b) to assess the implementation of this Agreement from time to time and consider steps which might need to be taken to ensure the speedy and full implementation of this Agreement in its entirety;

(c) to receive reports and complaints in respect of any issue related to the implementation, enforcement and execution of this Agreement;

(d) to serve as catalyst in creating and promoting an atmosphere of mutual trust and understanding between the parties; and

(e) to promote continuing dialogue between the Parties.

22.4 JOMIC shall be the principal body dealing with the issues of compliance and monitoring of this Agreement and to that end, the Parties hereby undertake to channel all complaints, grievances, concerns and issues relating to compliance with this Agreement through JOMIC and to refrain from any conduct which might undermine the spirit of co-operation necessary for the fulfillment of this Agreement.

22.5 The new Government shall ensure that steps are taken to make the security forces conversant with the Constitution of Zimbabwe and other laws of Zimbabwe including laws relating to public order and security.

22.6 The implementation of this agreement shall be guaranteed and underwritten by the Facilitator, SADC and the AU.

22.7 The Parties and the new Government shall seek the support and assistance of SADC and the AU in mobilizing the international community to support the new Government's economic recovery plans and programmes together with the lifting of sanctions taken against Zimbabwe and some of its leaders.

22.8 The Parties agree that they shall cause Parliament to amend any legislation to the extent necessary to bring this agreement into full force.



23. Periodic review mechanism

23.1 Having regard to the Objectives and Priorities of the New Government as set out in this Agreement, the Parties hereby agree that:

(a) they shall constitute a committee composed of 2 representatives each to review on an annual basis progress on the implementation and achievement of the priorities and objectives set out in this Agreement, namely: Economic (restoration of economic stability and growth, sanctions, land question) Political (new constitution, promotion of equality, national healing and cohesion and unity, external interference, free political activity, rule of law, state organs and institutions, legislative agenda and priorities) Security (security of persons and prevention of violence) and Communication (media and external radio stations); and

(b) the committee shall make recommendations to the Parties and the new government on any matters relating to this Agreement, more particularly on measures and programmes that may be necessary to take and make to realise full implementation of this Agreement.

(c) this Agreement and the relationship agreed to hereunder will be reviewed at the conclusion of the constitution-making process.

23.2 The Parties will continually review the effectiveness and any other matter relating to the functioning of the Inclusive Government established by the Constitution in consultation with the Guarantors.



24. Interim Constitutional amendments

The Parties hereby agree:

24.1 that the constitutional amendments which are necessary for the implementation of this agreement shall be passed by parliament and assented to by the President as Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment Act No 19. The Parties undertake to unconditionally support the enactment of the said Constitution of Zimbabwe Amendment No 19;

24.2 to include in Constitutional Amendment No19 the provisions contained in Chapters 4 and 13, and section 121 of the draft Constitution that the Parties executed at Kariba on 30 September 2007 (Kariba draft).



25. Commencement

This Agreement shall enter into force upon its signature by the Parties.

In WITNESS WHEREOF the Parties have signed this Agreement in the English language, in six identical copies, all texts being equally authentic:

DONE AT HARARE, ON THIS 15th DAY OF September 2008







In WITNESS THEREOF the Facilitator:



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(TALKZIMBABWE) Revisiting the principle of universality and the use of force

Revisiting the principle of universality and the use of force
Reason Wafawarova - Opinion
Sat, 03 Jan 2009 00:52:00 +0000

YET again the world watches in utter disgust as Israel engages in its ritual killings of innocent Palestinian civilians and children, just because the Israeli ruling elite are of the belief that “this is the time for fighting”, according to Ehud Barak, the Israeli Defence Minister.

The British and the Americans awkwardly blames “Palestinian aggression” for the brutalities of Israel and they dimly mumble something remotely linked to a call for restraint. Meanwhile Israeli authorities are reported to be arrogantly declaring a no time frame continued bombardment of Gaza.

The principle of universality is perhaps the most elementary of all moral truisms. However when one is confronted with US and Israeli exceptionalism, there is this flat rejection of universality in the Western intellectual, moral and political culture.

Formally the post-war consensus as enshrined in the UN Charter’s Article 51, on principles governing the use of force remains in effect. The brutal and unacceptable aggression by Israel on Palestinians brings to light this revealing and disturbing scenario that portrays a shift in the spectrum of opinion in Western elite circles. While none of them is willing to be honestly barbaric enough to openly and explicitly reject the post World War II consensus, the truth is that the consensus is being ignored and is deemed too extreme to consider under the Israeli “special circumstances”.

The only time the consensus is rigorously preached by Western politicians is during public discussions and electoral politicking.

The end of the last millennium and the beginning of this was characterised by a forceful articulation of a departure from the post-war consensus. The Nato bombing of Serbia, the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan and the 2003 invasion of Iraq are classic expressions of this departure and arrogant deviation.

The Western intellectual and political culture has coined the phrase “illegal but illegitimate” to try and give a face of decency to this terrorism. The enthusiastic support by Western intellectuals for resort to violence they deem to be legitimate is, of course a gross violation of the principle of universality.

It is a violation enshrined in the historical and somewhat racial prejudices that say only the “unpeople of this world”, (as Mark Curtis would put it); are liable to crime and barbarity.

When one takes a look at George W. Bush’s doctrine of “anticipatory self-defence”, as articulated in the US National Security Strategy of September 2002, then it is interesting to see how what applies to the United States has become unacceptable banditry for all others, unless they are authorised allies and client states of the United States.

The post-war consensus still reaffirms the stand of the world on war – that is the world outside what the West calls “the international community,” namely itself.

The declarations of Sadc and the African Union on the political crisis in Zimbabwe only received crude derision from Western circles. This is the standard reaction to the bleatings of the lesser peoples of this world.

When the Declaration of the South Summit of 2000 was made, firmly rejecting the “so called right of humanitarian intervention” the same committed derision from the West was poured mercilessly. The accompanying detailed and sophisticated analysis of neoliberal globalisation was thoroughly ignored in the West, just like the Sadc resolution that says there must be an inclusive government in Zimbabwe “forthwith”.

Back to the Bush doctrine of “anticipatory self-defence”, a US “senior official” later confirmed to be Condoleezza Rice, outlined that the phrase refers to “the right of the United States to attack a country that it thinks could attack it first.” This is the same lady who concluded that international court jurisdiction has “proven inappropriate for the United States,” and that the United States is not subject to “international law and norms” generally.

While the majority of American and Western citizens hold the view that force can only be used when there is strong evidence that a country is in imminent danger of being attacked, the elitist view is apparently very different.

The idea of exceptionalism was evident as early as the time of the Nuremburg Tribunal. Both the Nuremburg and Tokyo trials were flawed if the least were to be said. They were founded on rejection of the principle of universality.

In order to bring the defeated war criminals to justice, it was deemed necessary to devise definitions of “war crime” and “crime against humanity.” The Tribunal’s chief counsel for war crimes, Telford Taylor, explained how this was done.

Said Taylor, “Since both sides had played the terrible game of urban destruction – the Allies far more successfully – there was no basis for criminal charges against the Germans or Japanese, and in fact no such charges were brought... Aerial bombardment had been used so extensively and ruthlessly on the Allied side as well as the Axis side that neither at Nuremburg nor Tokyo was the issue made a part of the trials.”

The operative definition of “crime” became: Crime that you committed or carried out but we did not. By this logic, the Nazi war criminals were absolved each time the defence could show that their US and UK counterparts carried out the same crimes. On these grounds the Tribunal excused Admiral Karl Donitz from “breaches of the international law of submarine warfare” on the grounds of testimony from the British Admiralty and US Admiral Nimitz that the US and the UK had carried out the same crimes from the first days of the war.

While it can be argued that neither side was punished on these crimes, it remains clear that the approach discredited international law, as well as subsequent tribunals like the Yugoslavia Tribunal and the Special Court for Sierra Leone at The Hague. Washington’s self exemption from international law and the fundamental principle of universality together with Israel’s blatant breaches of international law and every peace treaty in existence are clear indicators of a world headed for disaster.

When one considers the behaviour of the United States at international level, the practice of exceptionalism is understandable. If the West entertained for a moment the principle of universality and also accepted for once that every country, just like the United States, has the right of “anticipatory self-defence” against terror or those “they think might attack” them first then countries like Iran, Cuba and Nicaragua in the eighties would have been entitled to attack the United States whichever way possible, given the involvement in very serious terrorist attacks against them, including blatantly advertised threats of attack on the part of Iran.

In similar fashion, one could argue that Japan’s bombing of US colonies, Hawaii and the Philippines was legitimate anticipatory self-defence since the American Press was awash with details of how American planes were capable to ‘burning down Tokyo, a city of rice-paper and wood houses” – all from bases in Hawaii and the Philippines.

On November 15, 1941, General George C. Marshal explained that “there won’t be any hesitation about bombing civilians.”

This provided far more justification for anticipatory self-defence than anything so far conjured up by Bush, Blair, Ehud Olmert or anyone else from the Allied West. We all know the implications of applying these elementary moral principles.

The general meaning and implications of international law are clear enough for anyone to understand, much as law is subject to a scope of interpretation. Washington and Israel’s unilateral right to resort to force is nothing but arrogant behaviour motivated by the might of military supremacy.

This military supremacy is the only explanation that can be given when Condoleezza Rice writes in Foreign Affairs (2000) condemning the “reflexive notions of international law and norms, and the belief that the support of many states – or even better, of institutions like the United Nations – is essential to the legitimate exercise of power.” Rice reiterated that the US needs not to conform to “illusory norms of international behaviour,” or “adhere to every international convention and agreement that someone thinks to propose.”

It is interesting to note that the US expects every country apart from its clients and allies to rigorously obey these norms, not as they are but as the United States interprets them; or else countries risk facing what befell Iraq, Afghanistan, Chile or Zimbabwe.

According to the Clinton doctrine, the US is entitled to resort to “unilateral use of military power in order to ensure uninhibited access to key markets, energy supplies, and strategic resources.”

This of course does not apply to other countries. They are not even allowed access to their own resources and Zimbabwe is just paying heavily for accessing its own land. Nicaragua, Grenada, Laos and other countries were invaded by the US for claiming ownership of their own resources.

The Israeli forces are massacring Palestinians today for their own land and all that can be heard from the US and the UK are feeble and faint calls for restraint.

They speak louder against a cholera outbreak in Zimbabwe. They shout raucously for regime change in Zimbabwe and they even advocate the use of force, something they condemned with the holiest of anger when Russia invaded Georgia earlier this year.

Zimbabweans need to look at these world events objectively and surely we cannot all be fooled by the same people all the time.

Zimbabwe we are one and together we will overcome. It is homeland or death!

Reason Wafawarova is a political writer and can be contacted on or or visit



(LUSAKATIMES) Almost 1,000 families survive on one meal a day in Kabompo

Almost 1,000 families survive on one meal a day in Kabompo
January 2, 2009

More than 980 households in Kabompo district of Northwestern province are said to be eating one meal per day because of shortage of maize in the area. This is according to the disaster and epidemic preparedness committee report, which was made available to ZANIS in Kabompo today.

The report says the worst hit areas are Chikenge, which has 111 affected households in Chief Kalunga’s area. Dikolonga has 102 households in Chief Chiyengele’s area and Watopa has 92 house holds in Senior Chief Sikufele’s area, who are said to be eating one meal per day.

Other areas affected are Mayawu, Kashinakaji, Kayombo, Mbulundu and Mulundu, Katuba, Mumbeji, Chitapalova, Chifuwe, Chikokwelo, Kawanda, Kasamba, Kulwashi and Manyinga.

The report attributed the hunger situation in Kabompo to uncontrolled sale of cassava chips and maize by small scale farmers to unscrupulous traders from a foreign country.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives has also cited the heavy rains and floods which destroyed crops in the fields last season as some of the reasons for shortage of food.


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Baluba mine shuts down pumps, ventilation fans

Baluba mine shuts down pumps, ventilation fans
Written by Zumani Katasefa in Luanshya
Saturday, January 03, 2009 7:32:05 AM

LUANSHYA‘s Baluba Mine faces serious flooding following the shutting down of vital installations at the mine.Briefing the press yesterday, Mine Workers Union of Zambia (MUZ) Luanshya branch chairman Stanslous Mwimbe disclosed that management at the mine had decided to shut down pumps and ventilation fans.

Mwimbe said the critically affected areas of the mine were 480 meter level flat area, climb centre, strike lump and SS 40 where all fans and pumps had been isolated from the areas. Other areas affected are 545 to 560 meter levels strike lump.

“At 580 level, all fans and pumps have been isolated except two small pumps. The 580 meter level centre haulage and exploration haulages SS 34 and SS 33 where there are boreholes and main collecting points for water underground have also been left without any ventilation and dewatering pumps.

As of 2nd January 2009, these areas are inaccessible because there is no ventilation and water is building up fast such that the crew which was sent this morning to go and collect the fans failed to reach the sections. If this situation is allowed to continue for a few more days, the mine will flood,” Mwimbe said.

He said in normal circumstances, mine rescue teams together with the ventilation officers were expected to carry out inspection exercises in areas which were not accessible by ordinary miners.

“The mine rescue and ventilation officers are not part of the care and maintenance plan. The fire services department has been left out of the care and maintenance team. Should any fire occur on any part of the mine, there would be no one to quench the fire on the mine,” he said.

He added that the Muzi Dam which was at the tail end of the mine and contains all the tailing and water from processing plants of the mines, had water contaminated with dangerous chemicals such as cyanide and its maintenance was controlled by environmental law.

“Under normal circumstances, the dam is maintained by a minimum of 50 people day and night with equipment such as front end loaders graders and tippers. In the current care and maintenance plan, they only provided for two people. This dam if not properly maintained has the potential to flood the mine and surrounding townships that is Roan and Luanshya townships,” he said.

Mwimbe said Luanshya Dam contained water from Luanshya streets and other streams in the surrounding area which was used in the processing plants of the mine.
He feared that with the plants closed down and the heavy rains being experienced, there would be no outlet for the water.

“The outlet foot pipe which used to drain water from Luanshya Dam was uprooted and sold off as scrap. Failure to manage the pumping of water from the Luanshya Dam and Baluba mines would result in Luanshya township and Baluba Mine to completely cut off north township like it happened in 2006,” he said.

Mwimbe added that the anti-pollution and pump chambers at the concentrator were some of the facilities which were not under care and maintenance plan.

“These are key facilities which pump out tails to the dams, if left unattended to and out of operations, the pump houses will easily flood and expensive equipment will be lost. Even under Binani/Ramcoz care and maintenance programme of 2000 with 600 employees with fully operational ventilation and pumping facilities at Baluba, 28, 18 and 14 shafts and management of Luanshya dam and concentrator facilities, the mine flooded and there was rampant vandalism which made it very expensive and difficult to restart the mine,” he said.

Mwimbe who described the action to shut down the pumps as criminal appealed to the government to take over the mine immediately to avoid the impending disaster.

He said government should bring ZCCM -IH on site with resources to manage the mine or find a credible investor since the current management had abandoned the facility.

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700 bags of FSP fertiliser in Kaoma go missing

700 bags of FSP fertiliser in Kaoma go missing
Written by Mwala Kalaluka
Saturday, January 03, 2009 7:29:11 AM

ABOUT 700 by 50 kilogrammes bags of fertiliser earmarked for distribution to small-scale farmers under the Fertiliser Support Programme (FSP) have gone missing at a storage shed in Kaoma.

Sources told The Post that some people involved in the fertiliser distribution were being probed and that comprehensive reports on the alleged misapplication of the inputs had since been sent to the FSP National Coordinating Office in Lusaka and the office of the Provincial Agricultural Coordinator in Mongu.

Kaoma district agricultural coordinator Imbuwa Mushebwa also confirmed the development and he said the situation had led to his office’s failure to satisfactorily distribute fertiliser to the 3,480 farmers targeted under the current farming season.

Mushebwa said apart from the bags of fertiliser, about 376 by 10 kilogramme pockets of seed had also gone missing at the shed whilst under the management of store managers from Omnia Fertiliser.

“For Kaoma, we had targeted 3,480 farmers. So we received Urea, 13,926 by 50kg bags; Compound D, 13, 906 by 50kg bags,” Mushebwa said. “A total of 3,447 farmers benefited as opposed to the targeted number of 3, 480, the problem being that we suffered some losses at the at the shed.”

Mushebwa said it was becoming apparent that some Omnia Fertiliser warehouse managers at the Kaoma Storage Sheds had not been honest in their dealings.

“They must have misapplied some of the inputs,” he said.

“We had 398 by 50 kg bags of basal dressing unaccounted for. We had 338 by 50kg bags of top dressing unaccounted for, although the warehouse managers say these were part of the fertilizer that was damaged. We had 376 by 10kg pockets of seed unaccounted for.”

He said following an administrative probe into the matter, Omnia Fertiliser had agreed to replace the misapplied fertiliser.

“The latest information is that the warehouse managers are going to replace the shortfall,” Mushebwa said.

When reminded that the misapplication of such government-funded initiatives was a criminal act, Mushebwa said the interest of the Ministry of Agriculture was to recover the missing inputs and it would be up to Omnia Fertiliser to take its officers to court and that such misapplications were criminal.

Complaints pertaining to problems in accessing fertiliser inputs have become rife in Kaoma and other parts of the country.

Agriculture minister Dr Brian Chituwo could not be reached for comment as he was reportedly attending a meeting by press time.

Yesterday, the National Association of Peasant and Small-Scale Farmers of Zambia described this season’s input distribution exercise as the worst since the beginning of the fertiliser support programme.

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Monze council to deny erring businesses trading licences

Monze council to deny erring businesses trading licences
Written by George Zulu in Monze
Saturday, January 03, 2009 7:27:07 AM

MONZE district council will not issue trading licences and permits to business houses that will fail to comply with the council regulations.

According to a notice to all business houses dated December 31, 2008 issued and signed by deputy district council secretary Kalobwe Mwila and copied to the local government officer, the council will not issue new trading licences and permits to violators of the local authority’s regulations.

Some of the requirements for renewal of licences entail business houses having health and fire certificates, dust bins, clean painted shops, ventilation and having no goods displayed along the corridors.

Mwila indicated that the requirements were in line with the Keep Zambia Clean and Healthy campaign launched by the late president Levy Mwanawasa.

And the council has started closing bars and taverns that were operating beyond stipulated hours.

Last Saturday, a combined team of state police and council officers swung into action, closing bars and taverns which were deemed to be a health hazard to members of the public.

Council officials said some of the bars and taverns closed were operating in poor sanitary conditions while others played loud music which was contrary to the Public Health Act.

Operators were made to pay a fine of K270, 000 and to ensure that sanitary facilities were made available before resuming operations.

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Resign, Bishop Lungu challenges ineffective MPs

Resign, Bishop Lungu challenges ineffective MPs
Written by Christopher Miti in Chipata
Saturday, January 03, 2009 7:25:06 AM

ZAMBIA Episcopal Conference president Bishop George Lungu has advised Zambians not to complain about the current economic problems but find a lasting solution for the benefit of the country.

And Bishop Lungu has challenged members of parliament that are not able to work for their constituencies in Eastern Province to resign.

In an interview to review 2008, Bishop Lungu said Zambians should look for solutions to respond to the current global economic crisis whose impact is now being felt on the local economy.

"Psychologically, it's not good for our nation, for our families. Let us receive this as a challenge and a challenge always demands a response, what is it that we have to do in order to respond to this challenge of global crisis? We have the land and other natural resources, what do we do about this? So I think we should be people of hope that in spite of what we read, what we hear, the Lord is with us; He is Emmanuel; He is being born amongst us; believe that He is giving us hope.

There is a possibility of change,” Bishop Lungu said. “He associates himself with the rich and the poor that means also that with him, we are going to succeed, so it’s not a time about just crying about the situation, about this and that no, just seek solutions together as a nation, as a Church, as an individual…let us seek solutions to respond to this global crisis, people say necessity is the mother of innovation so let’s be creative, let’s be innovative.”

And commenting on concerns raised by traditional leaders who attended the Eastern Province Royal Foundation conference last Tuesday that some MPs do not visit their constituencies, Bishop Lungu said parliamentarians that felt they were not able to man their constituencies effectively should resign.

"Voter apathy comes about when you have this situation where people have voted you into office but after that, the MPs have nothing to with their constituencies, they do not have time to go there," Bishop Lungu said.

"I think if they feel they are not able to do things, well why can’t they resign? It's not fair and if people feel that they have been left in the cold after voting someone into office whom they thought was going to help them, I think this was a popular cry and the chiefs were honest about the situation and Caritas also supported the chiefs’ observation and said this is what they find when they visit various constituencies.”

Bishop George Lungu also said the job losses in the mines were a threat to the nation and its people.

He said Zambians should change their mindset in order to promote development in various areas.

"We know that in the past, roads between villages were not maintained and constructed by the central government. The villagers, the headmen and the chiefs organised certain services that people are able to do so they did those things, but these days you wait until the central government sends a grader into your village otherwise we end up going through the bush, other people say no this road is not repaired because the government does not care, so I think this is an exaggeration of the situation the same things that we were able to do without outside help,” Bishop Lungu said.

“People have shown that they are able to do certain things without the help from outside and this can change the situation and if the mindset is changed that indeed there are certain things that we can do for ourselves which can change the situation and if we have the ability to do it, we need to go ahead and do it.”

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Sad pictures from Gaza

Sad pictures from Gaza
Written by Editor

Israel’s right to defend itself does not justify the country’s extravagant use of military force to kill so many Palestinians. And where are the condemnations of these massacres from the United States and Europe, the defenders of human rights?
Where are the nations and world politicians who made so much noise when Russia swiftly responded to Georgia’s invasion of South Ossetia?

These nations seem to be deaf and blind when the victims are Palestinians, they rush to show solidarity and they easily find harsh and strong words of condemnation when the victims are Israelis. All human life should be valued the same way.

The Israeli war jets are continuing to roll over the skies of the Gaza Strip and no Palestinian individual or organisation could do anything to stop it or prevent it. Those Israeli war jets are bombing and killing Palestinian people every day, whether they are resistance fighters, children, women, the elderly or families.

They are pursuing them the way the target in a computer game is pursued. And the Palestinians have no way to resist the Israeli war jets and no way to defend themselves and their families. If the Palestinians had the means to defend themselves, they would have used it to protect themselves and their families and not let their people be massacred in such large numbers.

The Palestinians have only their own flesh and blood – themselves, their families and their children – and nothing to defend themselves with. That is why they are killed every day by the Israeli pilots of lethal war machines. These pilots look like human beings but they behave like monsters. These pilots must be monsters because who can believe that a person who fires at children is not a monster?

This world hypocrisy and double standards should be changed. It is time for the world to act responsibly and condemn Israel – the world should stop condemning Palestinians, whose land is occupied by Israel and who are weak. The world spoke loudly when it wanted to stop aid and blockade the Palestinians, so Palestinians are waiting to hear loud condemnation of the Israeli massacre.

The United States and other nations should be doing everything in their power to stop this slaughter of Palestinians. We know that the whole blame is being put on Hamas firing rockets into Israel. But we should all know that Hamas is a relatively new organisation when one looks at the history of the problem of the Palestinians and Israeli occupation. Although no killing of any human being can be justified, the firing of those very poorly designed and manufactured rockets into Israel is a very desperate form of resistance.

It should be clear to everyone that there is no way the Palestinian occupied lands will be liberated with such poor weaponry. But desperate people do desperate things or resort to desperate methods. After so many years of struggle, desperation has set in. It is this desperation that has even led Palestinians into blowing themselves up. There is need for the world, as it condemns and tries to stop the firing of rockets into Israel, to justly and honestly address the root causes of this conflict.

If peace is to be established in Gaza, the primary requisite is to eradicate the cause of conflict between the Palestinians and the Israelis. But for many years, serious attempts at resolving this conflict have been undermined by those with veto privileges at the United Nations who support Israel regardless of whether it is wrong or right.

There is need for meaningful dialogue – dialogue that is rooted in the nature and dignity of all human beings – over this conflict. And dialogue, listening to each other and sharing beliefs, should not be a choice for the Israelis and Palestinians. It is a must if this conflict is to end and for them to live in peace and harmony with each other. Let those involved in this conflict humbly accept their wrongs and do that which is right.

The world should decry the endless bloodshed in this part of the world and urge an end to this violence, to this massacre of innocent human beings. The deaths of so many innocent people, the wounding of so many helpless people, the destruction of property in such a poor nation, the suffering and wailing of so many helpless people every day should move the world with indignation.

Hamas and the Palestinians will not liberate themselves through the firing of rockets into Israel and killing ordinary people in that country. And Israel will not end Palestinian hostilities towards it by trying to raze the whole of Gaza or even by the elimination of Hamas. They can succeed in eliminating this Hamas but in no time, another Hamas will emerge. There is need to build consensus around this problem and resolve it in a manner that is just, fair and humane. We know that Israel is well armed.

It has got a strong air force, thousands and thousands of tanks and the most modern military technology. But this will not help it stop Palestinian resistance. No fire power will succeed in crushing the aspirations of the Palestinian people for the return of their land. History has repeatedly shown that where there is a just struggle, no amount of force has ever succeeded in stopping it.

The only way out of this problem is to give to Caesar that which legitimately belongs to Caesar. But in doing so, Caesar must also recognise the need or right for his neighbour to exist or survive. If giving to Caesar what belongs to Caesar leaves the neighbour with no means to survive, Caesar will have no peace because survival instincts will force the neighbour to take even that which is not his. Let justice, fairness, humaneness prevail.



Muslims in Zambia condemn Israel attacks on Gaza

Muslims in Zambia condemn Israel attacks on Gaza
Written by Mwala Kalaluka
Saturday, January 03, 2009 7:21:07 AM

THE Islamic Council of Zambia has condemned Israel's brutal attacks on the Palestinian people in Gaza. And the Zambian government is still examining the warring situation involving Israel and Gaza before coming up with a comprehensive position on the conflict.Meanwhile, Pope Benedict XVI has again called for peace in the Middle East, saying hatred and a lack of trust are also forms of poverty that must be combated.

The Grand Mufti of Zambia Sheikh Assadullah Mwale stated in a press release that the Islamic community in Zambia was fearful that Israel's incursions into Gaza would undermine attempts to negotiate peace in the Middle East.

“The whole world has been thrown into a shock once again when Israel, despite enraged protests across the world, has continuously pressed ahead with its unpopular attacks against Gaza under the pretext of protecting its citizens from Hamas rocket-fire, killing 300 innocent people in only three days,” Sheikh Mwale stated.

“The Islamic Council of Zambia, which is a member of the 27 Muslim councils and associations from 27 countries and Africa as a whole is appealing for urgent cessations of hostilities, which are indeed crimes against humanity, which also violates the UN Charter.”

Sheikh Mwale further stated that the attacks on the enclave of Gaza were an unfortunate act that tended to undermine the human rights and sovereignty of the Palestinians.

“We therefore, condemn in the strongest terms, possible, all conditions put on the people of Palestine to undermine their independence and sovereignty and I call upon the entire world to do the same. The Middle East Peace process must continue and realistic measures put up to ease up the tension,” he stated.

Sheikh Mwale called on the United Nations to protect the weak nation of Palestine against all forms of aggression by restraining the Israeli government from carrying such disproportionate attacks against Gaza.

“The United Nations must not be a spectator when world peace and international law and order are threatened,” stated Sheikh Mwale.

And asked what the Zambian government's position on the recent violence involving Israel and Palestine's Gaza, chief government spokesperson Lt. Gen Ronnie Shikapwasha responded: “Not yet.”

When asked if the Zambian government had started the process of coming up with a position on what the Israeli government had described as an 'outright war' against Hamas, Lt. Gen Shikapwasha said the government was still examining the situation.

Meanwhile, Pope Benedict took up the theme of peace in the Holy Land at the end of his homily on New Year's day, which also marked the World Peace Day, held under the theme: ‘Fighting Poverty to Build Peace.’

His exhortation, according to the Vatican news agency, Zenit, was joined to an appeal he made last Sunday during his address for the midday Angelus.

As Israel's attack of Gaza continued for the sixth day, more than 400 Gazans, including a top Hamas official, his wife and children, had been killed.

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