Thursday, December 08, 2005

UN Envoy: Africa needs to addrss Zim crisis

In an interview with IRIN after his meeting on Wednesday with Sue van der Merwe, South Africa's deputy minister for foreign affairs, Egeland said, "We told them that each time it must not be Europe or any other western country raising issues [around] Zimbabwe."
The African Union has been taken to task by human rights bodies for its failure to criticise the Zimbabwean government's controversial clean-up campaign, Operation Murambatsvina, which left more than 700,000 people homeless or without a livelihood when it started in mid-May.
Earlier in the week, the UN envoy visited people affected by the "eviction campaign" in the capital, Harare, during a five-day fact-finding mission to Zimbabwe.
Egeland told IRIN that the UN had begun constructing temporary and permanent shelters for those left homeless by the campaign, but admitted that donors had been "reluctant" to fund construction, citing government's insistence that it would draw up its own list of beneficiaries as one of the problems. Egeland said the UN would now compile the list, which has helped address one of the donors concerns.

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