SENIOR STAFF WRITER
POLICE have blocked a planned Zanu PF demonstration tomorrow at the United States (US) embassy in the capital against the killing of African-American George Floyd by the police in Minneapolis.
This comes amid global demonstrations against the killing of Floyd.
It also comes after Foreign Affairs minister Sibusiso Moyo on Monday summoned US ambassador to Zimbabwe
Brian Nichols after claims by national security advisor to President Donald Trump, Robert O’Brien, implicating Zimbabwe, China, Russia and Iran in protests taking place across the US.
The ruling Zanu PF made an application to stage the demonstration against the US, but the police blocked it, arguing it was against the current coronavirus lockdown measures.
“Take note that gatherings of whatever purpose, are prohibited during this period save for those exempted in the statutory instrument. May you please shelve the idea at the moment until we have passed this pandemic phase,” reads a letter dated yesterday from the police blocking the planned protest. After meeting Moyo, Nichols issued a scathing attack on Zimbabwe and called her to stop “State-sponsored violence against peaceful protesters, civil society, labour leaders and members of the opposition”.
He said the Zimbabwean government must deal with its own human rights abuses in the country, including the recent alleged abduction and torture of MDC youths leaders.
The government denied having a hand in the alleged abductions and torture.
Moyo told Nichols that Zimbabwe had nothing to do with protests in the US.
“On behalf of government, I have today (Monday) informed the US ambassador that (Mr) O’Brien’s allegations are false, without any factual foundation whatsoever and that they are deeply damaging to a relationship already complicated by years of prescriptive megaphone diplomacy and punitive economic sanctions,” he said.
He said Zimbabwe has never been an adversary of the US.
Moyo said he told Nichols that Zimbabwe wanted a normal, cooperative relationship with the US, based on mutual understanding, respect and non-interference in each other’s internal affairs.
He said Zimbabwe also expressed its concerns over the “violence and hatred” which have erupted in cities and towns across the US.