Friday 24 November 2017
(AFP (eng) 11/20/17)
He is 93, in failing health and has enemies on almost every side, but President Robert Mugabe used his TV address Sunday to display the survival skills of one of the world's wiliest politicians. With the generals who threaten his grip on power sitting to his side, Mugabe blithely ignored demands he quit -- and even declared he would preside next month over his party's congress, despite the fact it had just sacked him. From vanquishing domestic political rivals after independence to weathering international sanctions over his ruinous policy of seizing land from white farmers, the president has a long history of defying pressure. Analysts gave quiet respect for Mugabe's tactical skills, even if they worry his latest manoeuvres have...
(AFP (eng) 11/20/17)
srael's cabinet voted on Sunday to close a migrant detention centre, as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced an agreement to deport 40,000 Africans who entered the country illegally. Ministers unanimously approved plans to shutter the Holot centre in southern Israel and gave migrants a three-month deadline to leave the country or face deportation, said the interior and public security ministries. "The infiltrators will have the option to be imprisoned or leave the country," the public security ministry said in a statement. Israeli official figures from June 30 show a total of 38,043 African migrants in the country. They include 27,494 Eritreans and 7,869 Sudanese, and their presence in south Tel Aviv has raised discontent among Israelis there and elsewhere. Speaking...
(AFP (eng) 11/19/17)
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe's 37-year rule appeared at an end Sunday after a source confirmed he had agreed to resign and was preparing to address the nation. Mugabe's grip on power was broken last week when the military took over, angered at his wife Grace's emergence as the leading candidate to succeed the 93-year-old president. "Yes he has agreed to resign," a source close to the presidency told AFP after Mugabe's expected television address to the nation was delayed. At a ruling ZANU-PF party meeting earlier in the day, delegates cheered wildly as a party official announced that Mugabe had been ousted as party chief. He was replaced by former vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, who had been Grace Mugabe's chief...
(AFP (eng) 11/19/17)
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe was on Sunday facing the end of his 37-year rule, as he prepared to address the nation after the ZANU-PF party sacked him as its leader and told him to resign as head of state. Mugabe's grip on power was broken last week when the military took over, angered at his wife Grace's emergence as the leading candidate to succeed the 93-year-old president. Expectation was mounting that he would resign on Sunday night after Zimbabwe state TV said he would "address the nation live from State House". At a ruling ZANU-PF party meeting earlier in the day, delegates cheered wildly as a party official announced that Mugabe had been ousted as party chief. He was replaced...
(AFP (eng) 11/19/17)
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe was on Sunday facing the imminent end of his 37-year rule as the once-loyal ZANU-PF party sacked him as its leader and army generals piled pressure on him to resign. Mugabe's grip on power was broken last week when the military took over, angered at his wife Grace's emergence as the leading candidate to succeed the 93-year-old president. On Saturday, tens of thousands of overjoyed demonstrators flooded the streets of Zimbabwe in peaceful celebrations marking the apparent end of his long and authoritarian rule.
(AFP (eng) 11/19/17)
President Robert Mugabe faced the imminent collapse of his 37-year regime Sunday, with the once-loyal ZANU-PF party set to sack him as its leader and army generals piling pressure on him to resign. Mugabe's hold on power was broken last week when the military took over after his wife Grace emerged as the leading candidate to succeed the 93-year-old president, who is the world's oldest head of state. On Saturday tens of thousands of overjoyed protesters flooded the streets of Zimbabwe in peaceful celebrations marking the apparent end of his long and authoritarian rule.
(AFP (eng) 11/18/17)
Zimbabwe's veteran leader Robert Mugabe once quipped that he'd rule his country until he turned 100. But the 93-year-old's decades-long grip on power appears to be slipping with the streets filled with protesters calling for his removal and top party leaders abandoning him in droves. First heralded as a liberator who rid the former British colony Rhodesia of white minority rule, Robert Gabriel Mugabe was soon cast in the role of a despot who crushed political dissent and ruined the national economy. After years behind bars as a political prisoner, Mugabe then led a bloody liberation war, which coupled with sanctions, forced the Rhodesian government to the negotiating table, with the country finally winning...
(AFP (eng) 11/18/17)
The tide seemed to be turning against embattled President Robert Mugabe on Saturday as thousands of Zimbabweans took to the streets in rallies sanctioned by the army to call for him to go. Soldiers whipped-up crowds of anti-Mugabe marchers into a frenzy of cheering and dancing in downtown Harare, flanked by the tanks and armoured personnel carriers used by the generals to seize control earlier this week. "We are happy our soldiers stood with us, the people. They must finish the good job to make sure Mugabe goes. We have been suffering," said one of those in the euphoric crowd, Baliwe Sibanda. "We are so happy they freed us from the Mugabe dynasty." Demonstrators in the city centre swigged from...
(AFP (eng) 11/18/17)
Thousands of protesters flooded Zimbabwe's streets demanding Robert Mugabe's resignation on Saturday in a movement organised by independence war veterans and backed by ruling party barons and the army. The mass turnout came after an unprecedented week which saw the army's top brass seizing power and putting Mugabe under house arrest in response to his sacking of Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa. It was a stunning turnaround for Mugabe who has ruled Zimbabwe with an iron fist since 1980. Veterans of the liberation war, who had previously supported Mugabe, had called for the gathering which saw marchers rallying in Highfield, a working-class suburb of Harare, with another demonstration staged in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe's second city. "This is the best day of my...
(AFP (eng) 11/18/17)
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe appeared publicly Friday for the first time since the military takeover in a defiant gesture, but faces pressure to step down from his party ahead of weekend protests. Leaders of eight of ten regional branches of the 93-year-old's ruling ZANU-PF party took to state television in an apparently coordinated push to call for him to go. "The province resolved unanimously to recall the president... from being the president of the party and the government," said Cornelius Mupereri, a spokesman for the party's Midlands region. Mupereri was one of several branch officials to appear on ZBC's nightly news to read almost identical statements calling on the liberation hero turned autocrat to resign
(AFP (eng) 11/18/17)
he African Union on Friday called for Libyan authorities to investigate "slave markets" of black Africans operating in the conflict-torn nation, following the release of shocking images showing the sale of young men. The demand follows the release of CNN footage of a live auction in Libya where black youths are presented to north African buyers as potential farmhands and sold off for as little as $400. Guinean President Alpha Conde, who is also Chairman of the African Union, demanded an enquiry and prosecutions relating to what he termed a "despicable trade... from another era". Meanwhile Senegal's government. commenting on Facebook, expressed "outrage at the sale of Sub-Saharan African migrants on Libyan soil,"...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
The leader of Zimbabwe's war veterans association, an influential voice in national politics, on Friday said President Robert Mugabe must step down at once and urged people to protest against the veteran leader. Christopher Mutsvangwa told a press conference the "game was up" for Mugabe and his wife Grace. He called for a huge turnout at street protests planned for Saturday in Harare. "The generals have done a fantastic job. It's done, it's finished," he said. "We want to restore our pride and tomorrow is the day... we can finish the job which the army started. "There's no going back about Mugabe. He must leave." Veterans of Zimbabwe's independence war were loyal supporters of Mugabe, but they turned against him...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe attended a university graduation ceremony Friday, making a first public appearance since the military takeover that appeared to signal the end of his 37-year reign. Despite his show of defiance, pressure mounted on the 93-year-old leader to quit as veterans of Zimbabwe's independence war -- key players in the country's power structure -- called for mass anti-Mugabe demonstrations on Saturday. Mugabe, 93, had been confined to house arrest after the military took over the country. But on Friday, he walked into the ceremony venue in Harare dressed in a blue academic gown and tasselled hat, before listening to speeches...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Friday that the people of Zimbabwe must be allowed to choose their own government through democratic elections, after the military took power. "We all should work together for a quick return to a civilian rule in that country in accordance with their constitution," he said, ahead of talks with African foreign ministers. Earlier in the day, Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe made a defiant appearance at a university graduation, but power in Harare has clearly shifted into the hands of the army. Washington was no friend of Mugabe, who has ruled Zimbabwe for the entire 37 years of its independence, but is also reluctant to defend what appears to most observers as a military...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
Emmerson Mnangagwa appeared well-placed to reprise his leading role in Zimbabwe after returning to the country in the wake of the army's takeover, prompted by his sacking by President Robert Mugabe. Nicknamed "Ngwena" (The Crocodile) because of his fearsome power and ruthlessness, the 75-year-old has a reputation for taking no prisoners -- but appeared to have been outfoxed by Grace Mugabe. The first lady, who is 41 years younger than her husband, apparently convinced the veteran head of state to ditch his long-serving lieutenant to further her own political ambitions. It was the climax of a long feud between Grace and Mugabe's then deputy to be in pole position to replace the ailing leader when he died or retired. Mnangagwa...
(Reuters 11/17/17)
It was the early 1990s when President Robert Mugabe’s eye fell upon one of his shy young typists. She would become his wife, a ferociously ambitious politician and, more than two decades later, a contributor to the downfall of her 93-year-old husband. President Mugabe is trying to cling to power after the military took over this week in response to his purge of vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, 75, a liberation war fighter and Grace’s sworn enemy. Mnangagwa’s aides even accused her of trying to poison him with ice cream from her dairy farm this year. She denies this. Grace, now 52 and under house arrest in Harare, had been calling for Mnangagwa’s removal for weeks as the two fought an...
(Reuters 11/17/17)
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe should end his attempts to remain in office after the military seized power this week as he has no regional diplomatic support to stay in power, Botswana President Ian Khama said on Friday. Botswana President Ian Khama looks on during the Botswana-South Africa Bi-National Commission (BNC) in Pretoria, South Africa, November 11, 2016. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko/File Photo The military intervention, which political sources say could pave the way to a national unity government after 37 years of Mugabe rule, also presented “an opportunity to put Zimbabwe on a path to peace and prosperity”, Khama told Reuters. “I don’t think anyone should be President for that amount of time. We are Presidents, we are not monarchs. It’s just...
(Reuters 11/17/17)
Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe appeared in public on Friday for the first time since the army took charge this week, as the ruling party made plans to force him to step down after more than three decades in power. Mugabe, who is 93, opened a graduation ceremony at Zimbabwe Open University in Harare. He wore blue and yellow academic robes and a mortar board hat and appeared to fall asleep in his chair as his eyes closed and his head lolled. Mugabe led the country’s liberation struggle and has dominated its politics since independence in 1980. He said he is still in charge but a senior member of the ZANU-PF ruling party said it wanted him gone. “If he becomes...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
Zimbabwe's former vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, whose sacking last week triggered the military's takeover, has returned to the country, an aide told AFP Friday as ageing leader Robert Mugabe clung onto power. Mnangagwa, who is a leading candidate to succeed to President Mugabe, flew back to Harare on Thursday after nearly a week abroad as army chiefs and the president met to negotiate Mugabe's exit from office. The 93-year-old president has refused to resign, sources said, after soldiers this week put him under house arrest in a stunning turnaround for the veteran leader who has ruled Zimbabwe...
(AFP (eng) 11/17/17)
Zimbabwe was facing an uncertain future Friday after President Robert Mugabe made a defiant public appearance and the army said negotiations with the 93-year-old head of state were continuing. AFP asked Anthoni van Nieuwkerk, a politics professor at Wits University in Johannesburg, to analyse the unfolding crisis: - How is Mugabe still in office? - "He is under house arrest but the military allows him to step out from time to time in an attempt to show the world that the law and order are being maintained in Zimbabwe," said Van Nieuwkerk. - What is being negotiated? - "There is an attempt now to develop a process for an inclusive government to take over from the military so that within...

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