Reinfeldt: Zimbabwe Sanctions Stay
Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt has announced that the European Union is not ready to lift its economic sanctions against Zimbabwe. Reinfeldt made his statement at a press conference in neighboring South Africa during his first international trip outside Europe since Sweden took over the EU presidency in July. He said that as long as human rights were not respected in Zimbabwe the sanctions would have to stay in place. In order to assess the present situation in Zimbabwe, Sweden’s Minister for International Development Cooperation, Gunilla Carlsson, will visit the country this weekend together with top level EU officials.
Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt is visiting South Africa with two hats, as his country's prime minister and in his capacity as the Chairman of the Swedish presidency of the European Union. The relations between South Africa and the EU will be the main thrust of Reinfeldt's visit but there will also be room for discussions on bilateral issues as well. South Africa has so far stubbornly refused to sign the European Partnership Agreement which regulates the Union's relations with African nations, arguing that as Africa's largest economy it is entitled to its own bilateral agreement.