The European Parliament has told President
Robert Mugabe to with immediate
effect release all political prisoners,
Female protester Linda Masarira is among
many citizens currently incarcerated at
Chikurubi maximum prison.
Following a special motion tabled today, EU
MEPs declared that Mugabe’s regime is now to
face the re-introduction of broad sanctions
which were lifted when Mugabe went into a
coalition government with the opposition in
MEPs expressed serious concern about the
growing violence against demonstrators –
informal traders, unemployed young people
and, now, professional people – who have
taken to the streets in urban centres across
Zimbabwe to protest against job losses, mass
unemployment and the government’s failure
to meet people’s basic economic expectations.
They also noted with alarm the recently
announced one-month ban on demonstrations.
The “rise in the number of arbitrary arrests
of human rights defenders” worries MEPs,
who urged that the rule of law should be
They said the “Zimbabwean authorities should
release all political prisoners immediately and
unconditionally and not interfere with the
independence of the judiciary.”
They condemned the recent statements by
President Mugabe attacking the judiciary.
The joint statement said, the EU Council and
Commission should consider reimposing certain
EU restrictive measures against the Zimbabwe
regime, while making it clear that these will
be removed and that an assistance package
will be made available once Zimbabwe is
clearly on the path towards democracy, the
rule of law and respect for human rights.