Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 23rd June 2009.

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Photo of Keith Simpson Keith Simpson Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what estimate he has made of the number of violent farm seizures in Zimbabwe which have occurred since the formation of the unity government; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Ivan Lewis Ivan Lewis Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

Since the Global Political Agreement was signed on 15 September 2008 there have been a number of violent incidents on farms. Farming organisations estimate that there have been 36 cases of assault against farmers and farm workers; five shootings; 62 cases of theft or destruction of crops, property or livestock; seven cases of farmers being barricaded in their property and 32 threats of evictions against farmers. 165 farmers have appeared in court and 35 farmers and workers have been evicted.

We condemn these attacks and urge the Inclusive Government to act on the commitments to reform that it has made, including respect for the rule of law and an end to violence. The judicial authorities in Zimbabwe must take action to end these seizures, which contravene the Southern African Development Community agreement of 15 September 2008.

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