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Mugabe-Tsvangirai Zimbabwe Cabinet Talks Said To Have Deadlocked

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and prime minister designate Morgan Tsvangirai met in Harare on Tuesday to discuss how key cabinet posts should be shared out between Mr. Mugabe's ZANU-PF party and Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change, but sources informed on the discussions said they ended in a deadlock.

The agenda for the talks at Zimbabwe House, the president's official residence, was informed by a recommendation from the negotiators of the power-sharing pact from all of the parties concerned that key portfolios such as finance, defense, home affairs, information and foreign affairs be divided equitably between ZANU-PF and the two MDC formations.

Neither ZANU-PF chief negotiator Patrick Chinamasa, currently minister of justice, nor Deputy Information Minister Bright Matonga, returned calls from VOA on Tuesday.

Despite Mr. Mugabe's assurance Monday that a new cabinet would be in place by week's end, spokesman Nelson Chamisa of Tsvangirai's MDC formation told reporter Blessing Zulu of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that the president is not negotiating in good faith.

Political observer Briggs Bomba, acting campaigns director of Africa Action, said President Mugabe and Tsvangirai must urgently install the cabinet as conditions are deteriorating daily between the country's economic meltdown and growing humanitarian emergency.

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