The New Zealand government has said it will not oppose a tour by Zimbabwe's national cricket team and will waive a travel ban to make the tour possible.
New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully said Wellington would issue visas to the Zimbabwean team as long as the situation in Zimbabwe remained stable.
The Kiwi cricket team is to tour Zimbabwe in October, ending an official ban on visits imposed in 2005. The Zimbabwean team is expected to reciprocate next year.
Zimbabwe Cricket Managing Director Ozias Bvute told VOA Studio 7 reporter Marvellous Mhlanga-Nyahuye he is happy New Zealand has changed its stance, adding that this is in line with the International Cricket Council’s call for the separation of politics from sports.
"We have been advocating for cricket-playing nations not to make decisions that are politically motivated," Bvute said, "so we are happy with the stance taken by the Kiwis and hope that other nations will follow suit."
Australia's “A” or second team is due in Zimbabwe later this month along with that of South Africa, similarly signaling a thawing of Harare’s relations with the West.