Southern Africa: Zimbabwe Sanctions Must Go - China

Zimbabwe's Emmerson Mnangagwa and Chinese President Xi Jinping (file photo).
5 September 2019

China stands with Africa in calling for the "immediate and unconditional" removal of all illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by Western countries, Beijing's Ambassador to Harare Mr Guo Shaochun has said.

Sadc countries last month declared October 25 as Solidarity Day against illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe and resolved to conduct various activities in their respective countries on that day to resoundingly call for the immediate removal of the sanctions.

Speaking at the Chinese Embassy in Harare yesterday during the handover of US$13 million to Zimbabwe to assist in Cyclone Idai recovery efforts, Ambassador Guo said the argument that the sanctions were targeted and did not affect ordinary people and the economy was false.

"Some countries claim that the so-called targeted sanctions did not have a major negative impact on Zimbabwean economy and its people's livelihood. Such an argument is false as sanctions disrupt financial transactions between Zimbabwe and outside world and disable Zimbabwe from accessing lines of credit from international financial institutions, which is essentially needed for development of a country," Ambassador Guo said.

"We support efforts of Zimbabwe to uphold its sovereignty, national security and developmental interests. We also support its efforts to fend off foreign interference into its domestic affairs.

"We do this because we understand how Zimbabwe feels about being interfered and sanctioned."

Ambassador Guo took a swipe at some Western countries and organisations for sponsoring violence, citing the recent scenario in Hong Kong and illegal demonstrations in Harare as an example of Western interference.

"What happened in Hong Kong has gone far beyond the scope of freedom of assembly, procession and demonstration and these radical, violent activities that severely undermine Hong Kong's rule of law and social order, gravely threaten the life and property of Hong Kong's citizens.

"Though China and Zimbabwe are geographically apart, what happened in Hong Kong may not be unfamiliar to Zimbabweans especially when some members of the US Congress, once again, proposed the so-called Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, which cannot, but remind people of the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act of 2001.

"It is an old trick for the US to use sanctions to interfere in other countries' internal affairs in furthering its own interests. The practices of some countries towards Zimbabwe and Hong Kong have once again exposed their hypocrisy and double standards," he said.

The US$13 million was released through the South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund launched by President Xi Jinping in 2015 at the United Nations Development Summit to facilitate the China's support for sustainable development in developing countries.

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