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Opposition Leader Pulls Out of Zimbabwe Election

Opposition Leader Pulls Out Following Violence in Zimbabwe

Today, Zimbabwe’s opposition party, the MDC, has announced it will withdraw from the June 27 run-off against current President Robert Mugabe citing among other reasons, escalating violence at the polls. Opposition candidate Morgan Tsvangirai said his opponent Robert Mugabe had declared war, and that his party would not be part of his war.

Tsvangirai said upon withdrawing, "conditions as of today do not permit the holding of a credible poll. Given the totality of these circumstances, we believe a credible election is impossible. We can't ask the people to cast their vote on June 27 when that vote will cost their lives. We will no longer participate in this violent sham of an election."


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Tsvangirai's party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has reported that dozens of their supporters have been murdered. An MDC spokesman painted an alarming picture of recent events: “People are being abducted at night. Our grassroots activists are being subjected to terror. Some of them are staying in the bushes and mountains to avoid Zanu-PF militias (pro-Mugabe).”

Mugabe's recent response to the challenge over his rule? He said that "only God" could remove him. "The MDC will never be allowed to rule this country — never ever. Only God who appointed me will remove me — not the MDC, not the British."

It seems that list now includes voters as well.

Source

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le-beau-rêveur le-beau-rêveur 8 years
I took a poli sci class this previous semestre and we've been following this case and it really makes you really hate the dynamics of international politics of today. Stephley is so right, while it's a good thing to have the UN to provide international regulations and norms - the power they dictate is only as strong as willpower of the nations that make it up as well as the lack of veto from one of the super fab five. It's a really sad thing to have the MDC pull out because of a dictator's unwillingness to let go... but it's not inexplicable. Economic interest, political soft power interest... it could go on, while humanitarian issues take the backburner as opposed to number one on the agenda. Instability in the 3rd world is only perpetuated further by the current mechanism of exploitation that is globalization and capitalism. A vicious cycle is created, power hungry dictators come to power in bloody military coups, the few elites prosper while the people suffer. It's not until there is total reform that things are going to change - and that starts at the roots, to economic, domestic, and international policies.
stephley stephley 8 years
The U.N. can only be as strong as its member nations allow. South Africa insists there is no crisis in Zimbabwe, China is arming Mugabe (and Sudan and Iran), the U.S. won't put pressure on China...Meanwhile, the U.N. and other sources of aid for Zimbabwe's people walk a fine line to make sure they aren't thrown out of the country all together.
stephley stephley 8 years
The U.N. can only be as strong as its member nations allow. South Africa insists there is no crisis in Zimbabwe, China is arming Mugabe (and Sudan and Iran), the U.S. won't put pressure on China... Meanwhile, the U.N. and other sources of aid for Zimbabwe's people walk a fine line to make sure they aren't thrown out of the country all together.
stiletta stiletta 8 years
Sometimes I wonder what role the UN plays at all. We have Sudan, Myanmar and Zimbabwe. What exactly do they accomplish?
Katharine Katharine 8 years
I think it is really sad they bowed to the pressure but Mugabe's tactics have been horrific. I thought I heard on NPR this week that the UN was going to step in but I guess they didn't.
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