'US policy on Zim not predictable yet'

HARARE - United States (US) Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Harry Thomas, said he cannot predict newly-elected president Donald Trump’s policy on Zimbabwe yet.

Trump — a Republican — was elected the US 45th president, beating former secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.

The US and Zimbabwe have had frosty relations with the former imposing targeted sanctions on President Robert Mugabe and his cabal.

However, Thomas said the superpower’s policy on human rights and HIV programmes as well as stance on Zimbabwe elections will remain the same.

America is one of Zimbabwe’s biggest donors, providing hundreds of millions of dollars towards health care, food aid and other humanitarian programmes through various support initiatives.

“I think one question that you all had beforehand is if Trump or Clinton won, what would be the policy towards Zimbabwe? We can’t predict the policy, I would not be so presumptuous to try and do that,” Thomas told a gathering at the Embassy’s Public Affairs Section to mark the country’s election day yesterday.

“But I really believe that our policy, our principle . . . in terms of human rights, support for free and fair elections in 2018 in Zimbabwe will continue. We know that our programmes for HIV/Aids funding will continue unabated,” he said.

“The amount of aid given to the food-insecure is actually going to increase,” Thomas said, adding that “Zimbabwe will continue at the top of numbers of Young African Leaders Initiative (Yali) Mandela fellows going to the US”.

Thomas said they were ready to implement Trump’s policies and respect the will of the American people.

“All we can say now is that we are happy that they (elections) were free, fair, violence-free and that we will respect the decision of the American people as we always have.”

The US has maintained sanctions on a bulk of ruling Zanu PF-linked individuals, including Mugabe and his wife, Grace, after recently removing nine officials and various State-controlled firms from a 166-long list.

It implemented the targeted sanctions programme in 2003 pointing out that the actions and policies of certain members of Mugabe’s government and other persons were undermining democratic institutions and processes in Zimbabwe.

The US Treasury Department, through its Office of Foreign Assets Control, prohibits American individuals and entities from transacting with those on the sanctions list.

In his victory speech, Trump said his administration would work with other countries, “fairly”.

“I want to tell the world community that while we will always put America’s interests first, we will deal fairly with everyone.

“We will seek common ground not hostility, partnership not conflict,” he said.

Comments (2)

You ,our brothers,Mr Ambsdor are not doing enuf for Africa.Yu seem to be here on holiday or to show off to us that it was good yo for fathers left the continent.Yo help is parthetic.It is something yes bt parthetic.Yu Mr Ambassador know how it is to be black in this world.What it means.Yu are a beter black bcoz yu enjoy being American, not African.Do a lot more plz,for yo heritage continent.Fight for our rights .More than yu are doing.

viola gwena - 10 November 2016

@Viola fuck u Dom kop , it is u zanoids who have propting a dictator hence destroying our beautiful country. Fuseki Mani, shlama

Bolo - 10 November 2016

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