European Union urged to consider re-imposing sanctions on Zimbabwe

European Union urged to consider re-imposing sanctions on Zimbabwe

THE European Parliament said it condemns the current wave of extrajudicial executions and killings in the Philippines, deteriorating security and widespread intimidation in Somalia, and growing violence against demonstrators and breaches of human rights in Zimbabwe, in three resolutions voted on Thursday.

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Members of the European Parliament express serious concern about the growing violence against demonstrators – informal traders, unemployed young people and, now, professional people – who have taken to the streets in urban centres across Zimbabwe to protest against job losses, mass unemployment and the government’s failure to meet people’s basic economic expectations. They also note with alarm the recently announced one-month ban on demonstrations. The “rise in the number of arbitrary arrests of human rights defenders” worries MEPs, who urge that the rule of law should be respected.

The Zimbabwean authorities should release all political prisoners immediately and unconditionally and not interfere with the independence of the judiciary, urge MEPs. They condemn the recent statements by President Mugabe attacking the judiciary.

The EU Council and Commission should consider reimposing certain EU restrictive measures against the Zimbabwe regime, while making it clear that these will be removed and that an assistance package will be made available once Zimbabwe is clearly on the path towards democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights, say MEPs, who believe that the lifting of the bulk of restrictive measures was premature.

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