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Anti-sanctions fight a gear up

As the anti-sanctions fight gathers pace, a top United Nations special envoy is expected in the country next month to gather views from stakeholders on how the illegal economic embargoes that were imposed by the West have adversely affected Zimbabwe.

The visit by UN special rapporteur Ms Alena Douhan from Belarus, who is expected in the country between October 18 to 28 at the invitation of Government will coincide with the Anti-sanctions Day which is commemorated on October 25 as Africa and other progressive countries join hands in the call for the unconditional removal of the illegal economic sanctions.

It also comes at a time when there is a consensus among the major political parties on the urgent need to remove the sanctions that have choked Zimbabwe’s economic development since their unilateral imposition by the United States and her allies at the turn of the millennium.

In a statement, the office of the UN Human Rights High Commissioner said Ms Douhan will get first hand information on how the sanctions have impacted ordinary Zimbabweans.

“She is seeking the views of all relevant stakeholders to inform the thematic and geographical focus of the visit and subsequent reporting.

“In order to gather first-hand information related to the negative impact of unilateral coercive measures on the enjoyment of human rights in a specific country, enabling her to conduct her assessment and evaluation of such impacts, and thus to prepare relevant recommendations and guidelines on means to mitigate or eliminate these adverse impacts, the special rapporteur undertakes field visits, ” read the statement in part.

Ms Douhan is the Special Rapporteur on the negative impact of unilateral coercive measures on the enjoyment of human rights, and her visit is expected to give her first hand information on how sanctions have stymied Zimbabwe’s development.

“The purpose of the mission is to examine, in the spirit of co-operation and dialogue, whether and to what extent the adoption, maintenance or implementation of unilateral sanctions impedes the full realisation of the rights set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human rights instruments, in particular the right of individuals and peoples to development.

“The Special Rapporteur will present her conclusions and recommendations in a report she will submit to the Human Rights Council in September 2022,” read the statement.

Meanwhile, opposition parties will next month take the anti-sanctions fight to the corridors of Western powers as they ratchet pressure for the unconditional removal of the illegal economic embargoes.

The visit by the UN Special envoy also comes at a time when the country received overwhelming support at the recently held United Nations General Assembly in the United States where various countries also called for the removal of the illegal and baneful economic sanctions.

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