Posted by: africanpressorganization | 23 April 2009

Aid Without Reform in Zimbabwe Risks Fueling Repression




Aid Without Reform in Zimbabwe Risks Fueling Repression



HARARE, Zimbabwe, April 23, 2009/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Tendai Biti, Zimbabwe’s new finance minister, is expected to visit Washington, DC, on April 24, 2009, to ask the US government, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund to resume development aid to Zimbabwe.  The country already receives just under US$1 billion in Western humanitarian aid, which is being managed by the United Nations and international aid agencies to feed more than half of the population and treat those suffering from communicable diseases.

Human Rights Watch said humanitarian assistance to Zimbabwe should continue, but Western governments should not provide financial support directly to the power-sharing government in Zimbabwe until its structures of abuse are reformed.

“Western governments should keep looking for creative ways to help vulnerable Zimbabweans, but they shouldn’t bankroll Zimbabwe’s unreformed institutions of repression and those running them,” said Georgette Gagnon, Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “Biti himself is not the problem, but some of his fellow ministers are. Human rights abusers should be prosecuted, not subsidized.”

To read the January 2009 Human Rights Watch report, “Crisis without Limits – Human Rights and Humanitarian Consequences of Political Repression in Zimbabwe” please visit: 

For more of Human Rights Watch’s reporting on Zimbabwe, please visit: 

For more information, please contact:
In New York, Georgette Gagnon (Africa director): +1-212-216-1223; or +1-917-535-0375 (mobile)
In Johannesburg, Tiseke Kasambala (Acting South Africa director): +27-11-484-2640
In London, Tom Porteous (London director): +44-20-7713-2766
In Washington DC, Jon Elliott (Africa advocacy director): +1-202-612-4348; or +1-917-379-0713 (mobile)


Human Right Watch (HRW)


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