by MARCUS MUSHONGA
HARARE, (CAJ News) – THE United States’ (US’) imposition of sanctions against two Zimbabwean political figures over alleged human rights is the latest twist in the hostile relations between the two countries.
On Wednesday, the government of Donald Trump designated former military commander, Brigadier Anselem Sanyatwe, and State Security Minister, Owen Ncube, for political repression.
Sanyatwe, now the Ambassador to Tanzania, was head of the Presidential Guard allegedly masterminded the military’s killing of six protesters in the post-election crisis in 2018.
Michael Pompeo, US Secretary of State, said these designations demonstrated continued US commitment to promoting accountability for human rights abuses.
“The State Department urges the government of Zimbabwe to immediately end state-sponsored violence including against peaceful protesters, civil society, labour leaders and members of the opposition in Zimbabwe, and to investigate and hold accountable those responsible for human rights violations and abuse,” he added.
As a result of Wednesday’s action, all assets, property and interests of property of Sanyatwe and Ncube within US jurisdiction are blocked.
Americans are generally prohibited from dealing with the individuals and their businesses.
Concurrently, the Treasury Department removed sanctions on Ray Kaukonde, Shuvai Ben Mahofa (deceased), Sithokozile Mathuthu (deceased), and Naison Ndlovu (deceased), all of whom were previously designated pursuant to Treasury’s authorities.
They are either deceased or no longer meet the sanctions criteria.
Relations between the US and Zimbabwe are strained after the former imposed sanctions on the Southern African country under the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act (ZDERA) of 2001.
America alleges human rights violations and electoral fraud but Zimbabwe accuses the US of imperialism, racism and stifling global human rights.
– CAJ News