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Abstract: Zimbabwe presents a set of critical, immediate challenges for U.S. policy. Different scenarios, including an unsanctioned snap election, a military coup, and President Robert Mugabe’s early death, could precipitate a sharp, even violent, crisis later this year. The United States can best respond by reinvigorating its active engagement with southern Africa and with the volatile and rapidly changing situation in Zimbabwe. This report details possible scenarios and offers options for strengthening Washington’s immediate and medium-term leverage in partnership with South Africa and the Southern African Development Community. Beyond Mugabe: Preparing for Zimbabwe’s Transition draws on a series of discussions by a CSIS Working Group on Zimbabwe as well as the author’s travel to Zimbabwe and intensive additional consultation with civil and political society within Zimbabwe.
Abstract: This paper identifies the factors linked to cross-country differentials in growth performance in the aftermath of social conflict for 30 sub-Saharan African countries using panel data techniques. Our results show that changes in the terms of trade are the most important correlate of economic performance in post-conflict environments. This variable is typically associated with an increase in the marginal probability of positive economic performance by about 30 percent. Institutional quality emerges as the second most important factor. Foreign aid is shown to have very limited ability to explain differentials in growth performance, and other policy variables such as trade openness are not found to have a statistically significant effect. The results suggest that exogenous factors ("luck") are an important factor in post-conflict recovery. They also highlight the importance in post-conflict settings of policies to mitigate the macroeconomic impact of terms of trade volatility (including countercyclical macroeconomic policies and innovative financing instruments) and of policies to promote export diversification.
Abstract: Zimbabwe’s former liberation fighters have become a household name for all the wrong reasons. This paper will seek to trace the development of the role of war veterans in Zimbabwe’s political and economic processes particularly from 1997 onwards to date and provide a contextual background for their perceived role and put the public perception of the former fighters in perspective.
The war veterans came into being with the demobilisation of those former ZIPRA and ZANLA fighters who were not attested into the Zimbabwe National Army, ZNA in 1980. The advent of Zimbabwe’s independence on 18 April 1980 and the subsequent formation of the Zimbabwe National Army made the former liberation armies both superfluous and redundant as their mission of liberating Zimbabwe had been accomplished. ZIPRA and ZANLA no longer had any role to play in an independent Zimbabwe. From then onwards, we could only refer to former ZANLA and former ZIPRA fighters. It is these fighters who then became referred to as veterans of the national liberation war.
Abstract: Intensified violence against those deemed to be ZANU-PF enemies has exposed the limitations of Zimbabwe’s much delayed reform process and threatens to derail the Global Political Agreement (GPA). President Mugabe’s call for early elections has increased fears of a return to 2008’s violence. Prime Minister Tsvangirai has appealed for help from the region. Eventual elections are inevitable, but without credible, enforceable reforms, Zimbabwe faces another illegitimate vote and prospects of entrenched polarisation and crisis. GPA guarantors – the African Union (AU) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and its South African-led facilitation team – have an uphill battle to secure implementation. ZANU-PF is increasingly confident it can intimidate opponents and frustrate reform, and there is waning faith, internally and externally, in MDC-T capacities. Mugabe’s health and ZANU-PF succession turmoil are further complications. Without stronger international pressure on ZANU-PF, the tenuous current coalition may collapse, triggering further violence and grave consequences for southern Africa.
Abstract: This policy and practice brief assesses the outcomes of the
Global Political Agreement, appraises the performance of the
Government of National Unity and examines the implications of
the Zimbabwe situation on sustainable peace in Southern Africa.
Data for this brief was acquired interactively from ten days of
fieldwork in Zimbabwe involving interviews with politicians,
civil society actors and political analysts. In addition, the author
participated in a stakeholder meeting organised by the South
African Liaison Office (SALO) in October 2010, which focused
on “Building International Consensus on Zimbabwe.” The
assessment was also informed by extensive review of relevant
secondary data. Subsequently, the author makes proposals and
recommendations for action that could be taken by the Southern
African Development Community (SADC), the African Union
(AU), GPA principals, civil society and the international community
towards addressing the current political stalemate in Zimbabwe.
Abstract: Since the signing and initiation of the Global Political Agreement in Zimbabwe in September 2008 and February 2009 respectively, the politics of the country has been convulsed with a recurring set of problems even as it has allowed for a certain political and economic stabilization. The agreement, with its attendant Inclusive Government, was set up to establish the conditions for a free and fair election. However it was always clear that, in a more determinate sense, it would provide the site for intense struggles over the state between the contending parties, with Zanu PF always in an advantageous position because of its control of the coercive arms of the state. It is thus not surprising that the Mugabe regime has used its control of the police, security and military sectors to contain the constrained promise of the GPA to open up democratic spaces. It is also clear that both MDCs have made strategic mistakes that have added to the already difficult challenges that confronted them at the outset of the process. Moreover the problems of the GPA have, on occasion, been compounded by the different roles of SADC and the West.
In recent months the Zimbabwean crisis has been somewhat overshadowed by the uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East, as well as the violence that has broken out over the contested election in the Ivory Coast. Both events, but particularly the developments in North Africa, have predictably forced comparisons with the Zimbabwe situation. This has often lead to over-optimistic hopes for an ‘Egypt moment’ in Zimbabwe, that are based less on a concrete analysis of the conditions in the country, than a desperate yearning that Zimbabwe’s authoritarian state face such a reckoning. The complex politics of the GPA in the context of the particularities of Zimbabwe’s history make any simple comparisons with North Africa difficult to sustain. This report thus sets out to think through the politics of the last two years in Zimbabwe, setting out the challenges that have had to be confronted, but also noting the opportunities it has provided, and the possibilities for the near future.
Abstract: Zimbabwe has suffered from high levels of political violence since 2000. While some states and the European Union (EU) have responded by imposing arms embargoes, other states have expressed no concerns about the situation. The most prominent supplier of arms to Zimbabwe has been China, which supplied more than one-third of the volume of Zimbabwe’s major weapons between 1980 and 2009. Russia has identified Zimbabwe as a potential market for its arms, but has yet to make many deliveries. While the United Kingdom was a major supplier in the 1980s and 1990s, it has since stopped selling arms to Zimbabwe.
Abstract: The failure of Zimbabwe's government to investigate and prosecute killings, torture, and politically motivated violence since the 2008 elections is fueling further human rights violations, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.
The 40-page report examines the lack of justice in several illustrative cases of political killings, torture, and abductions by government security forces and their allies during and after the presidential election run-off in 2008. Human Rights Watch called on Zimbabwe's power-sharing government to conduct immediate, credible, impartial, and transparent investigations into serious human rights abuses and to discipline or prosecute those responsible, regardless of their position or rank.
Abstract: This is a transcript of an event held at Chatham House on 12 January 2011.
Dr Dumiso Dabengwa, President of the Zimbabwe African People's Union, set out his vision for Zimbabwe to reclaim its position as a wealthy and united democratic force in regional and global affairs.
Abstract: In April 2010, the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN), a civic organisation whose main goal is to promote
democratic elections in Zimbabwe, embarked on a Voters’ Roll Audit (VRA) to assess the quality of the voters’ roll in
Zimbabwe. The research project sought to test the accuracy; currency and completeness of the voters’ roll and make
recommendations for a clean-up of the roll.
Voter registration is the principal means to determine those eligible to vote and those ineligible to vote. Thus a flawed
voters’ roll can disenfranchise eligible voters and allow ineligible voters to vote. International law requires fairness in voter
registration in order ensure that all eligible citizens can be registered to vote.
Observation of the voters’ roll was conducted using three tests -- a computer test, a list-to-people field test and a peopleto-
list test. In the computer tests, a number of variables were selected such as age, gender and number of voters in 2008
compared to 2010. In the two field tests conducted, the currency, completeness and accuracy of the voters’ roll were
ascertained by confirming the identity, national registration number, date of birth and address of the voter. A systematic
analysis of data obtained from these tests provides critical information about the quality of the voters that can inform
efforts to improve the voter registration in Zimbabwe.
Abstract: At the end of 2010, Zimbabwean citizens remained broadly supportive of power sharing as an
antidote to political crisis. But they were increasingly critical of the halting performance of their
country’s coalition government. Most people also perceived declining civil liberties and feared
resurgent political violence. Yet clear majorities called for constitutional reforms to limit the
powers of the presidency and seemingly even for free elections in 2011 to return the country to
These are the major findings of an Afrobarometer survey conducted among a national crosssection
of the Zimbabwean adults in late October 2010.
Abstract: Across the globe today, you'll find almost three dozen raging conflicts, from the valleys of Afghanistan to the jungles of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the streets of Kashmir. But what are the next crises that might erupt in 2011? Here are a few worrisome spots that make our list. [Captions provided by International Crisis Group]
Abstract: The fragile power-sharing deal between Zimbabwe’s political parties is close to breaking down. A deep rift has developed between the main protagonists: President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. Frustrated with deadlock in the country’s “unity” government, each has publicly called for fresh elections in 2011 as the only way forward. Yet the prospect of a new round of political campaigning raises the specter of a return to state-sponsored violence.
The latest stalemate risks a constitutional crisis that could ruin the coalition. The precipitating events were the president’s decisions to appoint provincial governors and ambassadors without informing the prime minister or seeking his consent. These unilateral acts are the most recent in a string of violations of the terms of a unity agreement struck two years ago. Mugabe’s latest maneuver adds evidence that power sharing does not work when one partner holds the balance of power and lacks sincere commitment to cooperate.
Abstract: Three actual or potential conflict situations around the world deteriorated and none improved in October 2010, according to the latest issue of the International Crisis Group’s monthly bulletin CrisisWatch released today.
Twin bomb blasts struck the Nigerian capital Abuja at the beginning of the month, killing at least a dozen people during celebrations of the country’s 50th anniversary of independence. A statement by the Niger Delta militant group MEND claiming responsibility for the blasts was later denied by former MEND leaders, although the group subsequently released a statement threatening a repeat of the attack. Meanwhile, tensions increased in Borno state as hundreds of troops were deployed in the state capital in response to a series of deadly attacks blamed on Islamic sect Boko Haram. Zimbabwe’s inclusive government looked increasingly unstable , threatening to fracture over differences on implementation of the 2008 Global Political Agreement and elections. The situation again deteriorated in Guinea, where CrisisWatch also identifies a conflict risk alert for November. October saw further political violence surrounding the second round of the presidential election between leading candidate Cellou Diallo and his rival Alpha Conde. Persistent tensions between the two camps following the controversial first round in June have been exacerbated by further delays to the run-off.
The announcement on 22 October that the polls would be postponed for a third time sparked more clashes along ethnic lines between rival supporters.
Abstract: The Centre for Conflict Resolution (CCR) in Cape Town, South Africa, held a two-day policy seminar
on 19 and 20 May 2008 at Kopanong Hotel and Conference Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The experiences and lessons at the local level in South Africa became a vital building block to expand
interventions to the rest of southern Africa, beginning in Lesotho, Swaziland and Zimbabwe. CCR selected the
three countries to inform interventions at the regional level on the basis of a shared common history and similar
governance challenges following transitions to democracy. The Centre’s work aims to bring together key actors
to resolve conflict utilising constructive approaches. To this end, CCR has sought to engage key actors in
government and civil society in long-term capacity and skills-building exercises in order to enhance their
knowledge and practice of constructive conflict management approaches while simultaneously building trust
and confidence between polarised groups. Ultimately, this approach seeks to create opportunities for political
and social dialogue between diverse groups.
Abstract: Over a year after the establishment of a transitional government in Zimbabwe, economic and
humanitarian conditions are gradually improving, but concerns about the country’s political future
remain. In February 2009, after almost a year of uncertainty following March 2008 elections,
opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai was sworn as Prime Minister of a new coalition
government. His swearing-in came five months after a power-sharing agreement was signed in an
effort to resolve the political standoff resulting from the flawed elections. For the first time since
independence, the ruling party had lost its parliamentary majority. The results of the presidential
race, announced over a month late amid rising tensions, indicated that Tsvangirai had received
more votes than the incumbent, President Robert Mugabe, but had failed to gain the 50% needed
to avoid a runoff. Days before the runoff, in late June 2008, Tsvangirai pulled out of the race,
citing widespread political violence and the absence of conditions for a free and fair election.
Mugabe was declared the winner, but many observer missions suggest that the poll did not reflect
the will of the people. In September, after weeks of negotiations, Tsvangirai and Mugabe reached
an agreement to form a unity government, with Mugabe remaining head of state, Tsvangirai
becoming Prime Minister, and cabinet and gubernatorial positions divided among the parties.
Disputes over key ministries delayed the agreement’s implementation for months.
Abstract: Many Zimbabweans considered the formation, in February
2008, of the Organ on National Healing, reconciliation
and Integration by the Inclusive Government – formed by
elements of the ruling Zimbabwe African National union
(ZANu) and the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)
– to be a watershed opportunity for stemming the nation’s historically entrenched culture of state-sanctioned violence
and impunity. Zimbabwe had never before comprehensively
attempted to prosecute or compel perpetrators of politically
motivated violence to acknowledge their transgressions,
because the national leadership regularly exploited
constitutional prerogatives to pardon perpetrators. Political
expedience has always outweighed the imperatives of
victim-sensitive national healing after all the major political
crises of the post-independence years. These included the
liberation war of the 1970s, the Gukurahundi inferno of the
1980s, recurring election-related violence in the post-colonial
era, the land reclamation exercise, and anti-MDC violence
In this article, I argue that the major deficiency in
the contemporary conciliatory political milieu is the lack
of clear and binding instruments for achieving national
healing and reconciliation. There is also no symmetry in
the power relations among the constituent political players
in the Inclusive Government. Individuals and interests
that fomented violence in the past remain powerful and still arbitrarily control some levers of the state, and this
forecloses meaningful national healing. Another shortcoming
is that national healing is also conceptualised in selective
racial terms, with the white community not factored into
the ongoing healing exercise. In short, the current national
healing process does not promise a new future without
impunity for Zimbabweans.
The ensuing narrative explores the intersecting politics
of post-colonial violence, retribution and impunity in
three parts. The first part analyses the key determinants
for national healing and reconciliation. In the second,
I contextualise violence in Zimbabwe by exploring the
inadequacies of the country’s post-colonial attempts at
national healing. The third section is my critique of attempts
at stemming the culture of impunity, and of establishing
sustainable peace by the new government and its National
Organ on Healing, reconciliation and Integration.
Abstract: The aim of this conference was to explore dynamics
that influence the democratic governance of the security
sector in Southern Africa. The 1990s was a period of
democratic transition for many states in Southern Africa.
These transitions often entailed a transformation of the
security apparatus with a particular focus on the defence
sector. This was evident in the priority given to transforming
liberation and guerrilla movements into professional
armed forces and the demobilisation of ex-combatants.
The democratic agenda brought with it a need for broader
participation in governance and for greater accountability
of the security services. This workshop report provides a summary of the conference's sessions: The state of the region; Perspectives on security; Creating security in an insecure environment: the case of the Democratic Republic of Congo; In search of security and justice for all: the case of Zimbabwe; Democratic governance of the security sector: selected case studies; Criminal justice in southern Africa; and Policing southern Africa.
Abstract: In 2008, Zimbabwe’s military launched a bloody crackdown in eastern Zimbabwe after
diamonds were discovered in the fields of Marange (otherwise known as Chiadzwa). Police
and soldiers, deployed by the government, massacred some 200 people as they seized
control of the area. They beat and raped locals, forced them to mine for diamonds, and
carried out other human rights abuses. Those responsible have not been held accountable.
Since revealing these abuses in a June 2009 report, “Diamonds in the Rough: Human Rights
Abuses in the Marange Diamond Fields of Zimbabwe,” Human Rights Watch has continued
to research conditions in Marange. It finds that while killings have abated, Zimbabwe’s
armed forces still control most of the fields, despite a commitment by the government to
remove them from the area. Corruption is rife, and smuggling of Marange diamonds by
soldiers in the field is prolific. The diamonds continue to benefit a few senior people in the
government and their accomplices rather than the people of Zimbabwe as a whole.
Abstract: The Kimberley Process rough diamond certification
scheme (KP) is credited by some with ending the
scourge of blood diamonds. However, the extreme
violence that has characterised life in Zimbabwe’s
Marange diamond fields over the past three
years has shattered this myth. Instead of expelling
Zimbabwe, the Kimberley Process has repeatedly
failed to take action, and state-sponsored human
rights abuses and diamond smuggling in Marange
continue, against a backdrop of opaque and
This report is an update on the situation in Marange.
It calls on the Kimberley Process to take urgent
and decisive action to address Zimbabwe’s noncompliance
with the scheme’s rules, bring to an end
the violence and corruption in the Marange diamond
fields, and restore public faith in the diamond trade. Section one of this report outlines the pattern
of violence in the Marange diamond fields. It
describes how the majority of the diamond fields
are still under control of the army, and how state
security agencies continue to commit human rights
abuses against civilians.
Section two examines the Kimberley Process’s
failure to act. Lack of political will on the part of
some participant governments, as well as weaknesses
in a system in dire need of reform, have left the KP
prevaricating in the face of precisely the kinds of
diamond-related abuses it is supposed to prevent.
Section three reveals that the joint venture
companies awarded mining rights by the
Zimbabwean government in the name of improving
conditions in Marange are in fact directly linked to
the Zanu PF military and political elite responsible
for the abuses.
Abstract: In the 1990s, International Non-Governmental Organisations (INGOs) in Zimbabwe were
development-oriented and played a complementary role to government services, in
particular in the agricultural sector. The situation changed with the land seizures in 2000,
which have largely destroyed Zimbabwe’s agricultural sector. Prior to the seizures, the sector
provided 45% of the country’s foreign exchange revenue and livelihoods for more than 70%
of the population. Agricultural output has dropped 50-70% over the past seven years.
Regular food gaps have occurred, making emergency interventions by a limited number of
officially accepted INGOs necessary. When the situation deteriorated in 2003, a UN
Humanitarian Coordinator (HC) was appointed. The UN Office for the Coordination of
Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has been present in Zimbabwe since January 2006. Within three
years OCHA has had three different Heads. The crisis in Zimbabwe can be called a multi-sectoral crisis. It includes not only natural
disasters, such as floods and drought, and the collapse of the health and school system, but
also a political crisis. 2007 and 2008 were particularly challenging with frequent shifts between different crisis
situations: natural disasters (floods and drought), episodes of political violence, food
shortages and, since September 2008, the cholera outbreak.
Abstract: Zimbabwe has been a nation on the brink, but its current inclusive government
provides a potential for the ‘situation’ to be resolved without open conflict.
Whatever the future, there remain millions of Zimbabweans who are crying
for justice, for the truth and for punishment of perpetrators of massive human
rights violations. The causes of Zimbabwe’s current catastrophe are quite clear:
the abuse of power and raw unadulterated greed, fuelled by the complete absence
of accountability. Perhaps it would have been different if concepts of transitional
justice had been more developed when Zimbabwe gained independence almost
thirty years ago. If that is the case, then we must ensure that the inevitable next
transition is accompanied by some form of justice. It is important that people affected by the violence in Zimbabwe become
knowledgeable about the possibilities of transitional justice – its strengths and
weaknesses – before they formulate their views. One group which is embarking
on this process is the Women of Zimbabwe Arise (WOZA). WOZA is a social
justice movement which has been in existence since 2003 and currently has over 70 000 members. The organisation encourages women to stand up for
their rights, and to exercise their severely circumscribed freedom of expression
to demand accountability from the government. As a result of their practice
of civil disobedience, embracing a policy of strategic non-violence, they have
been frequently subject to abuse by the police, including being beaten, arrested,
incarcerated, tortured and insulted. As women of the grassroots, they are also
victims of the economic effects of misrule, the destruction of homes and
livelihoods, the collapsed economy, and the lack of food and social services.
Most members of the organisation are struggling to survive, and as women, they
bear the brunt of the daily search for food to feed children, for medicines, for
Abstract: ‘We needed a war because we needed our identity cards. Without an identity card you are nothing in this country.’ As the author points out, a fighter for the rebel ‘new forces’ in Côte d’Ivoire condenses the argument of the book into two short sentences: that the denial of a right to citizenship has been at the heart of many of the conflicts of post-colonial Africa, and that it is time to change the rules. Without citizenship, the author points out, people: cannot get their children registered at birth or entered in school or university
cannot obtain travel documents, or employment without a work permit; if they leave the country they may not be able to return; most of all, they cannot vote, stand for office or work for state institutions. Furthermore , as the book highlights questions of citizenship have been used to prevent specific individuals from challenging for political position.
This book gives more details on issues such as: Citizenship law in Africa: a history of discrimination and exclusion; denationalized groups: disputes over the law have been at the heart of the wider debate; silencing individuals: citizenship law has also proved a useful tool to incumbent governments wishing to silence critics; and the scale of the problem: the true number of people affected by the crisis of citizenship in Africa is difficult to estimate.
Abstract: Air transportation has played a key role in the transfer of weapons, narcotics and precious
minerals, fuelling the war economies that have devastated much of Africa in recent decades.
At the same time, those air cargo carriers transporting these commodity flows that have
been so destabilizing are also involved in humanitarian aid and peacekeeping missions.
Air transport companies named in United Nations Sanctions Committee reports covering
weapons deliveries to Angola, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ivory Coast,
Liberia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan and Zimbabwe have all serviced humanitarian aid or
peacekeeping operations. They may avoid scrutiny by registering their aircraft in “flag of
convenience” states where safety oversight is poor and corruption is common. As a result,
their aircraft have crashed more frequently than others, sometimes with narcotics,
weapons, humanitarian aid or peacekeeping officials on board.
Abstract: What kind of conflict resolution approaches can effectively address intra-state wars
based on identity? Liberal peace models were designed to deal with inter-state
conflicts, and when applied to inter-ethnic conflicts bring limited success and often
disastrous results. This article from the African Journal on Conflict Resolution argues
that identities should be seen as key assets in building sustainable peace, justice and
reconciliation. Regional peace and security mechanisms and traditional justice
approaches should be used and international justice mechanisms approached with
caution. This special issue includes: Identity and Peace: Reconfiguring Conflict Resolution in Africa, by Gerard Hagg and Peter Kagwanja; Tunnel Vision or Kaleidoscope: Competing Concepts on
Sudan Identity and National Integration, by Atta El-Battahani; Identity Politics, Democratisation and State Building
in Ethiopia’s Federal Arrangement, by Kidane Mengisteab; Cultural Diversity and the Somali Conflict: Myth or Reality?, by Abdulahi A. Osman; Political Management of Ethnic Perceptions:
An Assessment of the African National Congress, by Mcebisi Ndletyana; Ethnic Diversity and Conflict in Nigeria:
Lessons from the Niger Delta Crisis, by Wilson Akpan; Cultural Diversity in Conflict and Peace Making in Africa, by Molem C. Sama; The Political Role of the Ethnic Factor around Elections
in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, by Hubert Kabungulu Ngoy-Kangoy; Identity and Cultural Diversity in Conflict Resolution and
Democratisation for the African Renaissance: The Case of Burundi, by Philippe Ntahombaye and Gaspard Nduwayo and ‘Echoing Silences’: Ethnicity in post-colonial Zimbabwe, 1980-2007, by James Muzondidya and Sabelo Ndlovu-Gatsheni.