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Zimbabwe State Media Floats Proposal For National Unity Government


With international pressure mounting on Harare to disclose the results of the presidential election held March 29, the state-controlled Herald newspaper Wednesday floated a proposal for a national unity government that its author said should be headed by President Robert Mugabe.

Pro-government commentator Obediah Mukura Mazombwe said neighboring countries should help broker a deal as political tensions make a presidential runoff problematic.

Meanwhile, presidential contender Morgan Tsvangirai of the Movement for Democratic Change, whose party says he won the election, continued a diplomatic offensive that observers said was having a significant impact on international opinion.

Tsvangirai met Wednesday in Maputo, Mozambique, with President Armando Guebuza and his predecessor, Joachim Chissano. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Africa Jendayi Frazer was in South Africa and was to travel on to Zambia and Angola.

In London, President Jacob Zuma of South Africa's ruling African National Congress met British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and lent his support to the notion of a national unity government.

Brown and Amnesty International called for an arms embargo on Harare.

Despite the appearance of the unity government proposal in a newspaper considered a mouthpiece for the Harare government, Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa said he knew nothing of such a proposal and Deputy Information Minister Bright Matonga in an interview with VOA's Blessing Zulu dismissed the idea.

Tsvangirai MDC Secretary General Tendai Biti said the proposal in the Herald should not be dismissed as an opinion but was a reflection of ZANU-PF’s thought process, contending that it showed ZANU-PF knew Mr. Mugabe could not win a runoff.

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

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