President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe on Monday again lashed out at the United States and Europe over their refusal to lift travel and financial sanctions targeting him and his inner circle, maintaining in a speech at the National Heroes Acre shrine outside Harare that the West has spurned his attempts at reconciliation and "moved the goalposts."
VOA Studio 7 correspondent Mark Peter Nthambe reported that President Mugabe told thousand gathered at National Heroes Acre, a shrine to 1970s-era freedom fighters, that the West wants to prolong the suffering of Zimbabweans.
Mr. Mugabe similarly denounced the West on Sunday, August 1, at the Heroes Acre burial of his sister Sabina, charging that the West was meddling in Zimbabwean politics and telling the U.S. and Europe to "go to hell."
The U.S., German and European ambassadors to Harare walked out of the ceremony in protest.
Political analyst Effie Dlela Ncube said the main reason relations between Europe and Harare remain strained is that Mr. Mugabe and ZANU-PF have not implemented fundamental political reforms that Europe has urged be carried out.
Political analyst John Makumbe of the University of Zimbabwe said Mr. Mugabe should not accuse the European Union of insincerity as ZANU-PF has been most responsible for non-implementation of the 2008 Global Political Agreement for power sharing with the Movement for Democratic Change, so continued Western sanctions are a self-inflicted injury.