» Wednesday, April 2, 2008


Asked for an update on the situation in Zimbabwe, the Prime Minister’s Spokesman (PMS) told the assembled press that people would have heard the reports and comments from the opposition parties, but as the Foreign Secretary made clear in his statement, it was the analysis of the Zimbabwean Electoral Commission that we would need to wait for, in order to get a definitive result that the Government could react to.

However, that did not take away from the fact that we encouraged these official results to be released as quickly as possible. Put that a report suggested that the Electoral Commission had announced that the opposition party had in fact won a majority in the Zimbabwean Parliament, the PMS said she had not yet seen that report and would need to do so before we could react to it.

Asked about possible aid packages from the UK, the PMS said she did not have details of aid packages to hand, but the Foreign Secretary had made clear that the Government would be there, and had always been there to support the people of Zimbabwe and he had also highlighted the fact that the UK was the second largest bilateral donor, spending over £40million last year on aid. As the situation developed, DfID and the Foreign Office would release any update on aid packages.

Put that the largest donor to Zimbabwe was China, the PMS replied that she did not have the table of donors. Asked if the Government had spoken to Chinese officials, the PMS asked journalists to check with the FCO whether there had been contact at an official level.

Asked what the Government would do if a situation similar to the one in Kenya broke out in Zimbabwe, the PMS said that the Government hoped such a situation and disruption would not arise and reiterated that this was why the Government was asking for the results of these elections to be published as quickly as possible.

original source.

Briefing took place at 16:45 | Search for related news

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