Africa to refuse cargo flights from China to Zimbabwe in their airspace

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South Africa’s official opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) Thursday called on the governments of Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique and Zambia to deny overflight rights to cargo planes from China carrying weapons and ammunition destined for Zimbabwe.

The DA said Zambia has already illustrated a great deal of leadership and courage in helping to resolve the impasse in Zimbabwe.

“If it can show similar resolve by refusing to allow the weapons consignment to enter its airspace and successfully lobby these countries to do the same, then its already impressive reputation will be enhanced,” said DA spokesman Coenraad Bezuidenhout.

Bezuidenhout said reports indicated a second consignment of weapons and ammunition destined for Zimbabwe was to land in Harare on Saturday and the likely routes included the airspace of these four countries.

“The procurement of a second consignment of weapons by air seems to indicate the Mugabe regime is not about to give up attempts to cling to power by stepping up its campaign of violence and intimidation against the people of Zimbabwe.

“If anything, the Mugabe regime’s resolve to use state-sponsored violence to suppress post- election opposition to its continued misrule of Zimbabwe has only been toughened after interventions in neighbouring countries prevented the first land-bound consignment of arms – still at sea – to reach that country.”

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