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Zimbabwean Exiles Continue To Seek Mugabe Human Rights Charges

The Zimbabwe Exiles Forum has filed an appeal seeking to overturn a ruling by the Canadian justice minister saying the country does not have the legal right to pursue President Robert Mugabe for alleged serious violations of human rights.

A spokesman for the civic group said it filed an appeal three days ago and is waiting for a judicial ruling on the question.

Canadian Justice Minister Vic Toews told Canadian parliamentarian Keith Martin, a Liberal, that Canada has no jurisdiction to indict Mr. Mugabe for crimes against humanity because he has immunity as a sitting head of state and because the crimes which he is alleged to have committed have no direct link with Canada.

The expatriate group says Mr. Mugabe is responsible for the deaths of at least 20,000 people in Matabeleland in the early 1980s, among other alleged offenses.

Zimbabwe Exiles Forum Executive Director Gabriel Shumba told reporter Jonga Kandemiiri of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that his group is also looking at the possibility of legal action against Mr. Mugabe in New Zealand.

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