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Zimbabwe condemns US sanctions on security minister

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Zimbabwe’s government has condemned the US’ decision to slap sanctions on State Security Minister Owen Ncube over his alleged involvement in gross violations of human rights, state-owned The Herald reports.

The US State Department announced on Friday that it had credible information on Mr Ncube’s role in “state-sanctioned violence against peaceful protesters, and civil society, as well as against labour leaders and members of the opposition leaders in Zimbabwe”.

The US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted about the decision:

Today, I publicly designated Owen Ncube for his involvement in a gross violation of #HumanRights in #Zimbabwe. State-sanctioned violence in Zimbabwe must end now and those responsible for human rights violations must be held accountable.

The sanctions were announced as President Emmerson Mnangagwa led the country in an anti-sanctions march in the capital, Harare.

The Zimbabwean government says the sanctions have cost the country billions of dollars in lost revenue as it battles shortages of basic supplies such as fuel, power and water.

The sanctions were imposed since 2001 on top members of the ruling Zanu-PF party and the military.

Minister of Information and Publicity Nick Mangwana told the Herald newspaper that the sanctions against his cabinet colleague are “a form of arbitrary justice”.

“The US brands itself a fair country but everything we have seen regarding the sanctions issue has been nothing but obstinate arrogance. I advise anyone to check minister Owen Ncube’s travel history and see whether the US has ever been part of his prime destinations,” Mr Mangwana is quoted as saying.

The Southern African Development Community, a 16-member regional bloc, has urged the US and EU to lift the sanctions against Zimbabwe.

SourceBBC NEWS

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