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Ban: Zimbabwe Power-Sharing Deal At An "Impasse"

Ban concerned over Zimbabwe ‘impasse,’ urges parties to reach deal soon

10 October 2008 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has urged the parties in Zimbabwe to step up their efforts to reach a “workable agreement” following the power-sharing deal reached earlier this month that ended months of political upheaval and set the stage for the formation of a government of national unity.

“The Secretary-General is concerned about this impasse,” spokesperson Marie Okabe told reporters today. “He urges the parties to focus hard on reaching a workable agreement as soon as possible.

“It is critically important to get a government in place and to take steps to restore the economy and get Zimbabwe on a path to recovery and a better life for its people,” she stated.

Ms. Okabe added that the UN, for its part, is making every preparation it can to work with the new government to help solve the problems facing Zimbabwe, where the humanitarian situation is “deteriorating and will continue to worsen through this year and into 2009.”

With more than five million Zimbabweans facing severe food shortages, the UN World Food Programme (WFP) yesterday appealed for $140 million to provide vital relief rations over the next six months.

Without additional contributions, WFP warned it will run out of stocks in January – at the very peak of the crisis.

ENDS

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