Zimbabwe

Foreign and Commonwealth Office – in the House of Commons on 11th May 2020.

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Photo of Ruth Jones Ruth Jones Labour, Newport West

What recent assessment he has made of the humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe.

Photo of James Duddridge James Duddridge Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

The humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe is bad. I had been an optimist on Zimbabwe post Mugabe, but things are bleak across the political, economic, social and humanitarian fronts. Her Majesty’s Government stand ready to support, but only when we see genuine reform. Until then, we support the people of Zimbabwe with a £140 million development package, but, crucially, none of that money goes directly through the Government of Zimbabwe.

Photo of Ruth Jones Ruth Jones Labour, Newport West

I thank the Minister for that update. There are currently 7 million people in urban and rural areas of Zimbabwe in urgent need of humanitarian assistance, compared with only 5.5 million in August last year. What conversations has he had with the Zimbabwean Government to discuss their humanitarian needs?

Photo of James Duddridge James Duddridge Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

On Thursday I spoke to the Department for International Development head in Zimbabwe and our ambassador about the situation. They were very clear, as I am, that we need domestic reform in Zimbabwe as well as external international development.