[holding answer 12 May 2008]: We are urging the Government of Zimbabwe to invite the widest range of international observers, including from the Southern African Development Community countries and the African Union, for any second round of the elections. Once they are deployed, we will press for all observer teams and missions to fully co-ordinate their efforts including with local observers on the ground.
[holding answer 12 May 2008]: We are urging the Southern African Development Community and African Union leaders and others in the wider international community to join us in pressing the Government of Zimbabwe to allow the deployment of sufficient international observers well in advance of any second round of the presidential election. This is a necessary precondition for a free and fair second round election.
We welcome the continued engagement of President Mbeki and other African leaders, both from within and outside the region, in efforts to resolve the electoral crisis in Zimbabwe. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary, my noble Friend the Minister for Africa, Asia and the UN, the right hon. Lord Malloch-Brown, and our high commissions are in close and regular contact on this subject with the Southern African Development Community Heads of State and Foreign Ministers.