UN: Lifting Zim sanctions a matter for individual states

Ban Ki-moon
Ban Ki-moon

United Nations (UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-moon says the lifting of targeted sanctions against Zimbabwe is a matter for individual member states.

He was responding to a question during a brief press encounter with journalists at the UN Headquarters in New York.

“Any sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe need to be discussed and done by the member states and intergovernmental bodies. I have been urging the government of Zimbabwe and President Robert Mugabe himself, on many occasions, that there should be fair and credible elections and for a democratic process in Zimbabwe,” says Ban.

He says that there should be full respect for human rights and they should work on improving the well-being of the people.

Earlier, statements by the UN called for the country’s leadership to govern responsibly and inclusively.

“I have taken note of elections which were held recently. I know that there have been some assessments by different groups of monitors and I hope that all these controversies or current assessment should fully reflect the will of the people in line with international democratic principles,” he added.

Both the European Union (EU) and the United States have called for credible elections as a precursor to lifting sanctions.

Meanwhile, the United States says it will only lift sanctions on Zimbabwe’s newly re-elected President Robert Mugabe if he implements political reforms.

On Sunday, southern African leaders called for the West to lift sanctions against Harare as they gave their seal of approval to Mugabe’s victory in disputed elections. However, Washington was unimpressed.

In March 2003, the United States imposed sanctions on Mugabe and his relatives. – SABC