Sunday, December 07, 2008

Mugabe must be toppled now - Archbishop of York.

The Archbishop of York has added his voice to the many throughout the world calling for Mugabe to be removed from power and has also stated that he thinks Mugabe should face trial for his crimes against humanity.

Dr John Sentamu, writing in The Observer, said the world must recognise that the time for talks was over and Mugabe should be forced out. 'The time has come for Robert Mugabe to answer for his crimes against humanity, against his countrymen and women and for justice to be done. The winds of change that once brought hope to Zimbabwe and its neighbours have become a hurricane of destruction, with the outbreak of cholera, destitution, starvation and systemic abuse of power by the state,' he says.

'As a country cries out for justice, we can no longer be inactive to their call. Robert Mugabe and his henchmen must now take their rightful place in The Hague and answer for their actions. The time to remove them from power has come.'

He said the power-sharing deal signed by Mugabe and the Zimbabwean opposition in September was 'now dead'.

This comes hot on the heels of recent cries for action from Gordon Brown, Condoleezza Rice and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Nick Clegg had gone further than the others and is now arguing that the use of international force has now become justified.
But Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg went further, saying the UN should now declare the use of military force was justified: 'The world has sat idly by while Mugabe has brutalised his own people for too long. Economic recession in the West has led the world to avert its gaze from the suffering in Zimbabwe. Further international inaction would be inexcusable.'
These are strong words and I wonder if the international community has any intention of doing anything other than simply condemning Mugabe.

One can only legally intervene in another country's business if genocide is taking place and I suppose the argument being made by Brown, Clegg and others is that the recent cholera epidemic has come about as a direct result of Mugabe's mismanagement of Zimbabwe and that these deaths could easily have been avoided.

It will still be a hard sell at the security council, especially if South Africa keep up their ridiculous habit of backing Mugabe at every turn.

But, since the outbreak of cholera in Zimbabwe, one has detected a distinct change in the language of world leaders and the feeling that their patience is finally at an end.

However, much as I would love to see him toppled, I have heard too many cries for intervention go unheeded to raise my hopes now. But it does seem as if something has changed in the way the international community is viewing events in Zimbabwe.

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