USA tells Zim to act on ‘those responsible for human rights abuses’

By Almot Maqolo

United States of America (USA) urged Zimbabwe to end state-sponsored violence against peaceful protestors, civil society, labour leaders and members of the opposition while holding accountable those responsible for human rights abuses, its ambassador to Zimbabwe said on Monday.

The sentiments by Washington’s top envoy to Zimbabwe Brian Nichols, come after being summoned by the Foreign Affairs and International Trade ministry to express government’s displeasure following the naming of the country among “foreign adversaries” that are trying to take advantage of the violence in USA by White House National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.

Nichols said both America’s and Zimbabwe’s constitutions enshrine the right to free speech and peaceful protest. “We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. Yet, peaceful protestors Joana Mamombe, Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova were arrested, abducted, assaulted and left for dead.

“To those who deny America’s right to speak out on their fate, let me remind you,”Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere…whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly,” he said.

In a long, unbroken line of black men and women, he said, George Floyd gave the last full measure of devotion to point us toward a new birth in freedom.

“Mr Floyd’s murder was a tragedy that has filled Americans with horror and anger. Mr Floyd’s killer was charged with murder in days. Every American official from our President to Minneapolis’ African American Police Chief Medaria Arradondo has vowed to deliver justice,” he said.

He said Zimbabweans surely wonder when, after so many years, Patrick Nabanyama, Itai Dzamara and Paul Chizuze will get justice. “Americans will continue to speak out for justice whether at home or abroad. We can meet the ideals of our founding, we will change this world for the better,” he added.

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