British parliamentarian Kate Hoey has stirred the wrath of Zimbabwean authorities by entering the country clandestinely with British journalists for meetings with opposition and labor leaders. Hoey left without incident, but Security Minister Didymus Mutasa warned that the next time Hoey enters without permission she will be arrested.
It was Hoey's second such visit. She first visited Zimbabwe unannounced in June 2005 to investigate Harare's urban "clean-up" drive, Operation Murambatsvina, returning to London to release video of evictions and demolitions, feeding world outrage. Hoey urged the international community to tighten sanctions against Harare.
The late Zimbabwean information minister, Tichaona Jokonya, said Hoey was merely trying to give a "fillip to (British Prime Minister Tony) Blair's anti-Zimbabwe" campaign. Jokonya added at that time that Zimbabwe needed better control over its borders.
Reporter Blessing Zulu of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe spoke with Hoey, who was in Copenhagen, Denmark, on Friday. Security Minister Didymus Mutasa described the British parliamentarian's unauthorized soujourn in Zimbabwe as "disgraceful."