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Nobel laureate urges Zimbabwe sanctions
July 21, 2005
(Reuters) - Africa should impose sanctions on Zimbabwe President
Robert Mugabe's government, which is a "disgrace" to the
continent, Nigerian Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka said on Thursday.
is no question at all about (sanctions)," Soyinka said in a
radio interview in South Africa. "Bulldozers
have been turned into an instrument of governance and it is the
ordinary people who are suffering ... it is a disgrace on the continent."
won the Nobel literature prize in 1986, is in South Africa to deliver
a lecture on Friday as part of the 87th birthday celebrations for
anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela.
The author spent
two years in detention in Nigeria for political activities and has
been a voice for human rights in Africa since the 1960s.
African leaders for failing to take a strong enough stance on Mugabe,
who critics accuse of rigging elections and violating human rights.
notion of let us close ranks: the rest of the world is watching,
the western ex-colonial powers are looking for any opportunity to
point a finger," he said.
In recent weeks
Mugabe's government has come in for fresh criticism for demolishing
urban shantytowns in a campaign rights groups say has left at least
300,000 people homeless.
the campaign, dubbed "Operation Restore Order", is aimed
at rooting out lawlessness and reasserting control over urban development.
Mugabe was typical of "rogues and monsters" who cling
to power in Africa through undemocratic means, and that the policy
of quiet diplomacy advocated by South Africa and some other African
countries was failing to achieve real change in Zimbabwe.
it's about time that it's shed. We've seen this in case of Zimbabwe,
it entrenches a dictator even more firmly because he's confident
that his criminalities will not receive the disapprobation ... of
his colleagues," he said.
Mugabe, 81 and
in power since independence from Britain in 1980, rejects criticism
of his policies and says Zimbabwe is being punished by opponents
of his land reform programme which seized white-owned farms to give
to landless blacks.
it was Africa's particular responsibility to react when former African
independence heroes go bad.
leaders change character and become terrorists toward their own
people we have a responsibility to use a language towards them as
strong as the language of admiration that we used before,"
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