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EU to resume aid to Zimbabwe

Staff writer ▼ | February 19, 2014
The European Union suspended sanctions on eight of Zimbabwe's most powerful military and political figures and is expected to pave the way for the EU to resume channelling development aid directly to the Zimbabwe government as of 2015.
Robert Mugabe
Robert MugabeThe European Union suspended sanctions on eight of Zimbabwe's most powerful military and political figures and is expected to pave the way for the EU to resume channelling development aid directly to the Zimbabwe government as of 2015.


The 28-nation EU, which imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe in 2002 in protest at human rights abuses and violations of democracy under Mugabe, has gradually eased sanctions over the last few years to encourage political reform, reports EurActiv.

Following last year's disputed elections, EU government representatives, who were meeting in Brussels, decided however to keep sanctions on President Robert Mugabe and his wife, highlighting a cautious easing of policy.

Another decision isd to pave the way for the EU to resume channelling development aid directly to the Zimbabwe government from 2015 after years in which the bloc shunned the government and worked with charities.

Mugabe has ruled Zimbabwe since independence from Britain in 1980. He has frequently clashed with the West over his policies and accused the United States and Britain in a speech to the United Nations last September of trying to control his nation and its resources.

Sanctions, which are reviewed annually, were suspended on the eight senior Zimbabwe officials who remained on the EU's list, EU sources said.

They include Constantine Chiwenga, commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, army commander Phillip Valerio Sibanda, Air Force commander Perence Shiri, intelligence chief Happyton Bonyongwe, police chief Augustine Chihuri and Didymus Mutasa, minister of state for presidential affairs.


 

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