Fredrik Reinfeldt and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attending EU talks in Lisbon

Swedish PM calls for Mugabe summit ban

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt has urged fellow European Union leaders to bar Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe from an EU-Africa summit in December.

Speaking to the Reuters news agency while in Lisbon for key EU talks, Reinfeldt said Sweden was asking the 27-member bloc not to allow Mugabe to attend, adding the leader should ”certainly not” be given a central role.

Unlike Britain however, Reinfeldt stopped short of saying he would boycott the conference.

The Swedish prime minister said such a decision would only be made in conjunction with EU partners.

Mugabe is accused of human rights abuses and has been held responsible for creating economic chaos in Zimbabwe, which now has the world’s highest inflation rate of some 6,600 percent, and unemployment of around 80 percent.

Mugabe is subject to an EU travel ban, although this can be lifted to allow him to attend the December summit in Lisbon.

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