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Foiled Coup Brings Tighter Harare-Malabo Relations

Nearly two years have passed since Zimbabwe foiled a coup plot aimed at President Teodoro Obiang Nguema of Equatorial Guinea, a deed Mr. Obiang will have a chance to recognize and repay on his three-day state visit to Harare begun Wednesday.

State radio said Mr. Obiang had come to thank the government of President Robert Mugabe for halting a plane carrying mostly South African mercenaries allegedly on their way to Equatorial Guinea in 2004 to topple the government there.

Analysts say this should be Harare’s opportunity to talk business with the energy-rich West African nation, perhaps obtaining concessionary prices on fuel to mitigate the severe shortages which have weighed on Zimbabwe's economy for many months.

Zimbabwe Integrated Program Chairman Heneri Dzinotyiwei tells reporter Chinedu Offor that Equatorial Guinea could become an important ally for Harare in the face of international sanctions, particularly as the nations share a common security bond.

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