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US Targeted Sanctions on Zimbabwe Politician Dumiso Dabengwa Removed


Dabengwa and Lesabe say they are relieved their names have been removed from the sanctions list as they can now conduct business for their party in the United States

Zimbabwe's reformed Zimbabwe African People's Union party or ZAPU said the names of its president, Dumiso Dabengwa, and prominent member Thenjiwe Lesabe. have been taken off an American list of individuals subject to travel and financial sanctions.

The US Embassy in Harare confirmed the removal of Dabengwa and Lesabe.

ZAPU spokesman Methuseli Moyo told VOA Studio 7 reporter Brenda Moyo that the delisting came as a relief in personal and political terms for the two.

Dabengwa served as the head of the Zimbabwe Peoples Revolutionary Army or ZIPRA intelligence during Zimbabwe's liberation war.

After the war the government of President Robert Mugabe charged him with treason with four others in 1982, but he was released in 1983 for lack of evidence.

Dabengwa was detained again soon under emergency regulations amid fighting between rival liberation movements, only to be set free four years later.

He served as minister of Home Affairs under Mr. Mugabe's ZANU-PF government and later ran as a parliamentary candidate for Nkulumane constituency in Bulawayo.

ZAPU was merged with ZANU to form ZANU-PF based on the 1987 Unity Accord, but in recent years former ZAPU officials have distanced themselves from the longtime ruling party and re-established ZAPU as a Matabeleland regionalist formation.

Mrs Thenjiwe Lesabe similarly defected from ZANU-PF to join the revived ZAPU. She was a member of ZANU-PF's politburo and the ruling party's women's league.

Dabengwa and Lesabe say they are relieved their names have been removed from the sanctions list as they can now conduct business for their party in the United States.

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