The embattled Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Wednesday blasted the outgoing United States President Donald Trump for rallying his supporters into storming the Capitol Hill.
In a series of tweets Mnangagwa said:
The outgoing U.S. President Donald Trump on last year extended by one year sanctions against Zimbabwe saying that the new government’s policies continue to pose an “unusual and extraordinary” threat to U.S. foreign policy.
The renewal was condemned by the South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa who called for the sanctions to be lifted to give the country a chance to recover from its economic crisis.
“The actions and policies of these persons continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the foreign policy of the United States,” Trump said in a notice announcing the extension, adding: “I am continuing for (one) year the national emergency declared in Executive Order 13288.”
The renewal comes despite calls by African leaders, including South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa, for the sanctions to be lifted to give the country a chance to recover from its economic crisis.
Trump administration officials had said the sanctions will remain until the government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa changes Zimbabwe’s laws restricting media freedom and allowing protests.
According to U.S. officials, there are 141 entities and individuals in Zimbabwe, including Mnangagwa and long-time former president Robert Mugabe, currently under U.S. sanctions.
Mnangagwa has called for the sanctions to be lifted against the ZANU-PF ruling party, top military figures and some government-owned firms, which were imposed during Mugabe’s rule over what the United States said were human rights violations and undermining of the democratic process.
In 2002 and 2003, the United States imposed targeted measures on the Government of Zimbabwe, including financial and visa sanctions against selected individuals, a ban on transfers of defence items and services, and a suspension of non-humanitarian government-to-government assistance.