Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Disclaimer: The Parliamentary Library does not warrant or accept liability for the accuracy or usefulness of the transcripts. These are copied directly from the broadcaster's website.
Obama maintains sanctions against Zimbabwe -

View in ParlViewView other Segments

Reporter: Sara Everingham

TANYA NOLAN: Zimbabwe might have a new unity Government but the US President says he hasn't seen
enough change to warrant the lifting of sanctions against the country. Barack Obama has announced
economic sanctions against Zimbabwe will continue for another year.

The European Union says it will also maintain its sanctions until the power sharing deal between
President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai is fully implemented.

Sara Everingham prepared this report.

MORGAN TSVANGIRAI: I, Morgan Richard Tsvangirai, do swear that I will be faithful and bear true
allegiance to Zimbabwe and observe the laws of Zimbabwe, so help me God.

SARA EVERINGHAM: Morgan Tsvangirai is no longer known as the leader of Zimbabwe's Opposition. This
week he became the country's Prime Minister as part of a power sharing deal with President Robert

The unity Government itself is less than one month old, but the United States has decided not
enough has changed in that time and its sanctions against Zimbabwe will continue for another year.

DONALD PAYNE: We have not seen a significant change on the part of President Mugabe.

SARA EVERINGHAM: The Democratic Congressman Donald Payne explained the US position to the BBC.

DONALD PAYNE: We have not seen - for example, Roy Bennett the Minister of Agriculture in this,
actually a part of the new power sharing Government, was arrested and charged with trying to leave
the country illegally. And we think he may have put up bail yesterday, we're not sure whether he's
been out or not. But how do you say that this is a new Government when the same things are

SARA EVERINGHAM: In his maiden speech to Parliament this week Morgan Tsvangirai, the leader of the
Movement for Democratic Change, said it was time for the international community to rethink its
policies on Zimbabwe.

MORGAN TSVANGIRAI: I therefore want to urge the international community to recognise our efforts
and to note the progress that we made in this regard and to match our progress by moving towards
the removal of any restrictive measures.

SARA EVERINGHAM: But Congressman Payne argues the US will keep sanctions against Robert Mugabe and
other members of his Government in place until they show they're willing to change and until
President Mugabe fulfils the promise of his power sharing deal with Morgan Tsvangirai.

DONALD PAYNE: If Mugabe would change, then we would say fine. However, unless he changes, no we
won't be satisfied until he leaves.

SARA EVERINGHAM: There are still numerous crises in Zimbabwe. The latest figures from the World
Health Organization show the cholera outbreak has killed 4,000 people.

The American actor Matt Damon has been shining a spotlight on the plight of refugees who continue
to flee the country. As a representative of the group Not On Our Watch formed by Hollywood
celebrities he visited asylum seekers in a refugee camp in the South African border town of Musina.

MATT DAMON: I guess it was a testament to the situation in Zimbabwe that these people were, a good
amount of them actually have to swim the Limpopo River to get to South Africa, which is a harrowing
journey in and of itself because there are crocodile and hippos. And I talked to one woman who swam
with a baby on her back in a group of 13 people and only five made it across the river. In terms of
the women, I didn't meet a woman who was not raped on the journey.

Obviously there's this new Government, call it a unity Government or an inclusive Government in
Zimbabwe, and everybody in the world community is hoping beyond hope that things work out, because
incidentally every single refugee I talked to said, you know, if things improved in Zim that they'd
go back.

SARA EVERINGHAM: Many of the refugees in the camp hope to seek political asylum in South Africa.
But the South African authorities have decided to close the Musina refugee camp, a move that puts
even more pressure on Zimbabwe's new unity Government.

TANYA NOLAN: Sara Everingham reporting.