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Zimbabwe: Tsvangirai praises US funding of PM's office
Posted: Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Herald
August 26, 2011

MDC-T leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai has acknowledged his party uses sanctions imposed by the West on Zimbabwe as leverage against Zanu-PF and praised the United States for funding his office as premier and secretly trying to influence Sadc's stance on Harare.

In a letter to US President Barrack Obama in 2009, one of 100 latest releases on Zimbabwe by the whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks, Mr Tsvangirai - Prime Minister in the inclusive Government - indicated that he was in constant touch with US ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Charles Ray on the matter.

Part of the letter, dated December 21 2009 reads: "We have had discussions with Ambassador Charles Ray on restrictive measures (his euphemism for economic sanctions). I well understand that movement on the part of the international community will need to be in response to tangible progress on GPA implementation."

"We should, however, ensure that movement when it comes is seen to be acknowledged in a tangible way - striking a careful balance between retaining leverage and rewarding progress. This will involve difficult judgments but it will be important to sustain momentum when it comes," Mr Tsvangirai added.

He also briefed the US president on GPA negotiations.

"In light of the current negotiations of the three political parties, I have now taken personal interest in the normalisation of relations between my government and your government and my office will be following up on this very critical issue in the coming year," Mr Tsvangirai said.

He acknowledged the support the US government has offered to the MDC-T directly and indirectly.

"I write to convey my appreciation for the support we have received from you personally, the government and the people of your great nation . . . I was very pleased, Mr President, to note the support offered by your country and the various international non-governmental organisations that expanded beyond the life saving interventions which were so important," Mr Tsvangirai said.

He claimed support by the Obama administration brought direct benefits to millions of people in Zimbabwe and "demonstrated to the hard-pressed population that the reformists in Government are capable of delivering results".

"Your support to my office has also been invaluable and I look forward to this continuing," he said.

Mr Tsvangirai praised Mr Obama for his behind-the-scenes involvement in efforts by Sadc to iron out the so-called outstanding issues in the GPA.

"The role played by Sadc, in general, and the mediator President Jacob Zuma, in particular, is greatly appreciated. I know that you have personally played a crucial role in helping this to happen. I encourage you to continue your crucial dialogue with President Zuma," he said.

The letter has exposed the MDC-T's double standards as the party has in the past denied the existence of sanctions. The MDC-T leader, who committed himself to lobby for the removal of sanctions in the GPA, has surprisingly never used his correspondence with Western leaders to honour his GPA obligations.

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