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Zimbabwe: Elections

Volume 473: debated on Wednesday 12 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to his (a) EU and (b) African counterparts on the need for international pressure on Zimbabwe to observe international standards in the 29 March elections in that country; and what action has been agreed. (192911)

[holding answer 10 March 2008]: We are very concerned that the forthcoming Zimbabwean elections will not be conducted in free and fair circumstances. The Minister for Europe, my hon Friend the Member for East Renfrewshire (Mr. Murphy), discussed the importance of Zimbabwean elections meeting international standards with his EU counterparts on 10 March 2008 at the EU General Affairs and External Relations Council. Our high commissions and embassies in the region are in regular contact with members of the Southern African Development Community. They are urging them to ensure that the forthcoming elections in Zimbabwe meet international standards, including the Southern African Development Community guidelines and principles on elections.