Agency for International Development (USAid)’s new country director for Zimbabwe Art Brown while speaking to the publication said only meaningful reforms will see the US softening its stance against beleaguered Zimbabwe and lifting the sanctions on 83 individuals and 37 entities in Zimbabwe, The Zimbabwe Independent reports.
Addressing the issue in the interview, Brown said:
The absence of progress on the most fundamental reforms needed to ensure rule of law, democratic governance, and respect of constitutional rights leaves Zimbabweans vulnerable to ongoing repression and presents a continuing threat to peace and security in the region.
Unfortunately, at this juncture, Zimbabwean authorities have not yet made sufficient progress to merit the lifting of sanctions, but our commitment to the people of Zimbabwe is ever solid.
Progress on these goals is the path forward to prosperity and deeper engagement with the United States and the international community. We believe Zimbabwe’s civil society organisations, and political parties
have critical roles to play in facilitating improved governance.
Brown said it was unfortunate that the government of Zimbabwe keeps blaming the US sanctions for the country’s woes while the sanctions only target 83 individuals and 37 entities:
As a general matter, and let me be clear, the United States does not maintain broad sanctions against the people or the country of Zimbabwe. US sanctions target 83 individuals and 37 entities who engage in corruption, violate human rights, and undermine democratic institutions or processes. We have maintained our Zimbabwe sanctions programme because of the absence of significant political and economic reforms.
It is unfortunate that the Government of Zimbabwe tries to blame United States sanctions for the country’s current woes. Zimbabwe’s sovereign economic and political policy choices, not US sanctions, caused the economic challenges we see today.
More: The Zimbabwe Independent