Zimbabwe: Human Rights

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 6th March 2020.

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Photo of Emily Thornberry Emily Thornberry Shadow Foreign Secretary

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the human rights situation in Zimbabwe.

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

The UK is seriously concerned about the challenging human rights situation in Zimbabwe. We saw a significant increase in human rights violations in 2019, including abductions, arrests and assault of civil society, trade union and opposition activists and the banning of protests. Zimbabwe remains one of the UK's 30 Human Rights Priority Countries globally. The UK Ambassador last met Vice President Chiwenga on 9 December 2019 and discussed the economic crisis and political situation in Zimbabwe, reinforcing the need for comprehensive political and economic reform and the protection of the poorest. The UK is providing £128 million of aid to Zimbabwe during this financial year 2019/20 focusing on poverty reduction, humanitarian assistance and standing up for human rights and the rule of law. No money is channeled directly through the government. DFID has also committed £49 million through a new Zimbabwe Humanitarian and Resilience Programme (ZHARP) to support people who do not have access to the food they need.

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