Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Obama expresses admiration for Tsivangirai

HARARE - US Democratic candidate Barack Obama on Tuesday held a conversation with opposition MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai on the way the ruling Zanu PF party has treated him and his party during the presidential run off campaign and on his decision to pull out of the race.

“I have spoken with MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai to share my deep concern for the way his supporters are being targeted by the regime, and to express my admiration for his efforts to ensure that the will of the Zimbabwean people is finally respected,” Obama said in a written statement.

“The Zimbabwean government’s campaign of repression and brutality has made it impossible for the June 27 elections to be free and fair,” Obama said, echoing a position taken by the United Nations on Monday.

Obama said the SADC region and other African leaders should call for president Mugabe to leave office and respect the will of the people. Mugabe has on his campaign rallies declare war if he loose the presidential election adding that only the Almighty God would remove him from power and not Tsvangirai and his western allies.

“If fresh elections prove impossible, regional leaders backed by the international community should pursue an enforceable, negotiated political transition in Zimbabwe that would end repressive rule and enable genuine democracy to take root,” he said.

The opposition leader Tsvangirai also said he welcomes any decision that will enable Zimbabwe to rebuild its economic and political status which has been destroyed by the Mugabe policies since 2 000 when the government embarked on the political programme dubbed the land reform programme.

Obama's sentiments comes at a time when the SADC and other African countries and the U.N. Security Council unanimously condemned the Zimbabwean government of unconstitutional misconduct in the presidential run off while neglecting the will of the people.

The Zimbabwean electorate had been subjected to acts of torture, intimidation, arson and killings for voting for MDC party in the march 29 harmonised elections.

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