EU Calls for Immediate Release of Zimbabwe Poll Results | Europe| News and current affairs from around the continent | DW | 17.04.2008
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EU Calls for Immediate Release of Zimbabwe Poll Results

The European Commission has called on Zimbabwe to publish the results of the March 29 presidential election immediately. Further delays were unacceptable, it said.

Ruling ZANU-PF supporters celebrate following the victory of one of their candidates in Harare

Zimbabweans are still waiting to find out who won the presidential poll

"Clearly the publication of the results is needed and is needed now," a spokesman for the EU's executive arm told reporters in Brussels on Thursday, April 17. "Further delays are unacceptable and will just be considered as stalling the democratic process," John Clancy said.

"The European Commission along with the rest of the international community continues to watch and wait for action."

Robert Mugabe

Robert Mugabe

The EU's call comes a day after British Prime Minister Gordon Brown launched an attack on President Robert Mugabe.

"No one thinks, having seen the results of polling stations, that President Mugabe has won," Brown said at a summit of the United Nations and the African Union in New York on Wednesday.

"A stolen election would not be a democratic election at all," he said. "Let a single clear message go out from here in New York that we ... stand solidly behind democracy and human rights for Zimbabwe."

In the dark

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday called for international observers, should there be a second round of elections, and pressed African leaders to intensify their efforts to find a resolution to the crisis.

Morgan Tsvangirai

Morgan Tsvangirai

Although Harare published the outcome of the March 29 parliamentary elections, it has not yet made public the results of the presidential poll that was held the same day. Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai insists he beat Mugabe and that the ruling ZANU-PF is avoiding publishing the results as it searches for a way to keep the incumbent in power.

The MDC had won control of parliament from ZANU-PF.

Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) says that two of its supporters have been murdered, while the US ambassador to Zimbabwe, James McGee, spoke of an atmosphere of fear ahead of the 28th anniversary of Zimbabwe's independence from Britain on Friday. He said opposition backers in rural areas had been killed, abducted and forced from their homes since the elections.

Mugabe, 84, has never lost an election during his 28 years in power.

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