Thursday, June 21, 2007

Opposition leader says time is running out

BRUSSELS, Belgium 0: Zimbabwe's opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai said Wednesday time may be running out to organize free and fair elections next March.

The Zimbabwe government and Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change are holding talks in South Africa seeking to solve the political crisis that reached new heights earlier this year with the arrest and beating of pro-democracy leaders.

Tsvangirai wants the talks to lay the groundwork for next year's elections....

Zimbabwe has presidential elections scheduled for next year and there are moves to advance the parliamentary elections by two years from 2010 so they coincide.

President Robert Mugabe is still the official candidate though there are repeated rumors he is under pressure to stand down.

The opposition maintains intimidation of voters and ballot rigging have robbed it of victory in parliamentary and presidential elections in the past — warning that polls scheduled for next year will be no different.

It also wants the repeal of sweeping media and security laws, electoral reforms and an end to state-orchestrated political violence.

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