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Diplomats Say EU Will Widen Sanctions Against Zimbabwe

By VOA News
17 July 2008

Diplomats say the European Union has agreed in principle to widen sanctions against Zimbabwe when the bloc's foreign ministers meet in Brussels on Tuesday.

EU diplomats Thursday say the sanctions will likely involve travel bans and asset freezes on more individuals and companies connected to President Robert Mugabe's government.

Currently, the EU has sanctions against Mr. Mugabe and more than 100 supporters of his government.

Zimbabwe's ruling party and the opposition are expected to sign an agreement soon that could lead to substantial talks on ending the country's ongoing political crisis.

Mr. Mugabe was re-elected last month in a widely condemned runoff vote in which he was the only candidate.

Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai dropped out a few days before the election after many of his supporters were killed in violence he said was state-sponsored.

President Mugabe's ZANU-PF party and the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, MDC, are negotiating conditions for the talks.

Mr. Tsvangirai has insisted that conditions include an end to violence against his political supporters and the release of political prisoners.

He has also called for a mediator to be appointed alongside South African President Thabo Mbeki, who he says favors President Mugabe.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.


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