STATEMENT ISSUED BY THE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE, HONOURABLE LT GENERAL (RTD) DR SIBUSISO MOYO, M.P.
We once again note, with regret, the inclusion of Honourable Minister Owen Ncube and Ambassador Anselm Sanyatwe as “Specially Designated Nationals” on the OFAC US Treasury Sanctions List.
Both officials were already placed on the State Department’s Visa and Travel Negative List during the course of 2019. In both cases, the reason given for the designation was allegations of human rights abuses and political repression.
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This decision can only further erode trust and confidence in the relationship between Zimbabwe and the United States at a time when more than ever, confidence-building measures are required so as to sustain the ongoing process of re-engagement between our two countries.
In taking this action, the US Government appears, unilaterally, to have charged, tried, convicted and sentenced two very senior Zimbabwean nationals – Surely the very antithesis of justice as we understand it.
The holding to account of any individual or individuals, anywhere in the world, for alleged human rights abuses and/or political repression, must surely be evidence-based as scrutinised in and upheld by a court of law.
Any other approach is surely, in itself, a violation of those individuals’ human rights.
Our Government does, however, register its deep appreciation for the bilateral assistance being provided to Zimbabwe in many areas.
The US could be of even greater assistance by moving towards the lifting of the sanctions which it maintains in place and which it renewed just last week.
Contrary to US Government assertions, those sanctions inflict collateral damage way beyond the individuals and entities included in the OFAC list. They impact negatively upon each and every Zimbabwean.
As I have said previously, regardless of these negative developments and the lack of even-handedness in the US approach to Zimbabwe, my Government’s will continue to engage in meaningful dialogue with the United States of America.
In parallel, we will continue to travel the path of reform for the benefit of all our people.
Honourable Lt General (Rtd) Dr Sibusiso B. Moyo, M.P. MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE
11 March 2020