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The Maori Party Confirms Zimbabwe Position

8 July 2005

Tariana Turia

The Maori Party Confirms Zimbabwe Position

The Maori Party has today confirmed the party position in relation to comments made about the situation in Zimbabwe.

"We are against all oppression and the denial of justice, where-ever it is" stated Mrs Turia, co-leader of the Maori Party.

"We must not be selective in our condemnation of human rights abuse, abroad or at home".

"We remain determined that a comprehensive, informed and consistent approach must be taken in challenging abuse in all regions".

"We ask the question why some countries are singled out for condemnation whilst others are ignored because of a desire to protect economic and trade agreements with those nations".

"If we're going to trade human rights for dollars, how much are they worth?"

"As regards Zimbabwe, our position has been that we must take a principled approach which involves those closest to the problems and indeed the solutions. It must, as a necessity, involve the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), and the ZANU-PF Party, and other African states particularly South Africa".

In the last 24 hours there has been a strong call from the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan who has said it is vital for African countries to break their silence to protect the continent's credibility in the eyes of the world.

"Governments of countries outside Africa have not solved the problems for those nations".

"We are awaiting the report from the special envoy to the UN, as is UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and South African President Thabo Mbeki. We are hopeful that the report from the United Nations will be a key source of advice for both domestic and international action".

ENDS

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