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Zimbabwe's Tsvangirai Urges Full Reunification Of Fractured Opposition

Founding President Morgan Tsvangirai of Zimbabwe's divided opposition Movement for Democratic Change said Tuesday that he would rather see the MDC fully reunited than merely patched into a coalition for national elections due in a few months.

Both MDC factions have expressed willingness to work together in a coalition under which they would avoid going head-to-head in the country's 210 constituencies, and would back a single presidential candidate - most likely Tsvangirai himself.

But Tsvangirai told reporter Blessing Zulu of VOA’s Studio 7 for Zimbabwe he'd prefer to see the MDC united, and his National Council has endorsed such a move.

The MDC split in late 2005 over the question of whether or not to contest elections for a reinstituted senate, and though the opposition has developed a common position in South African crisis-resolution talks with the ruling party, it remains divided.

Though Tsvangirai expressed hope he reunite the country's main opposition party, the state-controlled Herald newspaper poured cold water on the prospects for unity.

It reported that despite a "recent flurry of reports predicting an imminent re-unification of the fractured opposition MDC, officials from both factions have said no headway has yet been made in healing the October 2005 rupture just three months ahead of the scheduled landmark harmonized elections," an article in the paper said.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...