Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 27 March 2001.

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Photo of Francis Maude Francis Maude Shadow Secretary of State (Foreign Affairs) 12:00, 27 March 2001

The effect of those visits was to give Mugabe a propaganda coup, and the Foreign Secretary should admit it. If the Commonwealth ministerial action group is prevented from undertaking its mission in Zimbabwe, will the Foreign Secretary confirm that, without hesitation, he will press for the suspension of Zimbabwe from the Commonwealth? Will he urge the imposition of travel bans and criminal investigations of those of Mugabe's henchmen who sustain him in his murderous and repressive regime? Does the right hon. Gentleman understand that, yes, there is a case for quiet diplomacy, but that there is no case for supine inaction?