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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
06HARARE803
2006-07-10 16:01:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Harare
Cable title:  

VICTIMIZED MP DOWNPLAYS TSVANGIRAI LINK IN PRIVATE

Tags:   ASEC  PGOV  PHUM  PREL  ZI 
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VZCZCXRO4237
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DE RUEHSB #0803 1911601
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R 101601Z JUL 06
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0292
INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
RUEHUJA/AMEMBASSY ABUJA 1269
RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 1114
RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 1273
RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 0047
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 0534
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RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 1327
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RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 1096
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 1735
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RUFGNOA/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUFOADA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK
RUEKDIA/DIA WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1484
						C O N F I D E N T I A L HARARE 000803 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

AF/S FOR B. NEULING
SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR C. COURVILLE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/10/2015
TAGS: ASEC PGOV PHUM PREL ZI
SUBJECT: VICTIMIZED MP DOWNPLAYS TSVANGIRAI LINK IN PRIVATE
EVEN AS HER FACTION UPS PUBLIC HYPE

REF: HARARE 791

Classified By: Ambassador Christopher Dell for reasons 1.5 b/d



1. (SBU) Pro-Senate MDC MP Trudy Stevenson on July 7 told
USAID local staff member that she did not believe the
anti-Senate leadership ordered the July 2 attack on her and
four other pro-Senate officials (reftel). Recovering at home
and in high spirits, she said it was even possible that the
GOZ had paid unemployed youths in the MDC to attack her.
Nonetheless, she admitted that her pro-Senate faction was
"making a song out of it." (N.B. For instance, pro-Senate
MDC spokesman Gabriel Chaibva was quoted in the
state-controlled The Sunday Mail as stating that the
anti-Senate faction's alleged involvement was a "conspiracy
against the people of Zimbabwe.")



2. (SBU) Stevenson also gave a readout of her son's July 3
meeting with anti-Senate faction leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
She said the opposition leader had expressed his outrage at
the incident. Tsvangirai had pledged to her son that the
party would set up a commission to investigate the attack and
would expel any party members found guilty. Stevenson also
acknowledged that many of the anti-Senate MDC leaders had
visited her to express their sympathies and to condemn the
violence.



3. (SBU) The USAID local staff member also met July 9 at the
Ambassador,s direction with Tsvangirai with a message that
the opposition leader needed to be more forceful and public
in his condemnation of the attack. Tsvangirai told the staff
member that the ruling party was to blame for creating a
culture of violence through years of GOZ manipulation and
destruction of rule of law in Zimbabwe. That said, he
condemned violence in general and said that his party had
issued two press statements condemning this incident in
particular. However, Tsvangirai said he recognized that the
allegations were a diversion from his party's campaign
against the GOZ and promised a swift investigation and, if
necessary, expulsions.



4. (SBU) Irene Petras, one of three lawyers assigned to the
anti-Senate MDC's investigation commission, on July 10 told
an Embassy local staff member that the committee met over the
weekend for the first time and charted the course of their
investigations. The commission hoped to interview the
victims on July 11 and had applied to receive copies of the
police records of the event. Petras promised to update Post
as events unfolded.



--------------------------


Comment


--------------------------





5. (C) Regardless of Stevenson's private message to us
disassociating the anti-Senate MDC leadership from the
incident, the pro-Senate faction of the MDC is definitely
hyping the attack in a clear effort to score political
points. Although early indications suggest that MDC youths
may in fact have carried out the attack, we have seen nothing
to suggest that the anti-Senate faction condoned it.
Moreover, it is entirely plausible that the GOZ may have paid
unemployed MDC youths to stage the attack. The Ambassador
plans to meet with Tsvangirai July 10 (septel) to press the
point that the opposition leader needs to be more outspoken
in condemning the attack.
DELL