ALN Denounces Recent Violence in Zimbabwe
The Africa Liberal Network (ALN), an organisation of eighteen African liberal parties is deeply concerned about the rapidly deteriorating situation in Zimbabwe.
Following the break up of a public meeting by riot police on 11th of March 2007 in Harare, Zimbabwe, and the arrest of opposition leader, Morgan Tsvangirai and his supporters, and the subsequent arrest on 17th of March of Arthur Mutambara, we the members of the ALN strongly condemn the excessive use of force used by the police against Zimbabwean citizens exercising their right to freedom of expression.
The events of the last week are a gross violation of the basic democratic rights of citizens to engage in peaceful assembly.
The role of any rights respecting government is to allow peaceful assembly and to provide a space for the exercise of legitimate political rights.
We call on the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the African Union (AU) to strongly condemn the actions of President Mugabe’s police force;
We demand the immediate and unconditional release of all opposition supporters;
We wish the prompt recovery of those who have been brutalized;
We express our solidarity with the people of Zimbabwe who have been fighting for a peaceful, stable, and truly democratic Zimbabwean state that respects the rights of its citizens;
We call on the international community to increase the level of sanctions against the government of Zimbabwe, especially “smart sanctions” that target senior government officials if the rights of citizens are not restored and respected.
Président of the Africa Liberal Network
19 March 2007
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