Tsvangirai not at crisis talks in Mbabane

Zimbabwe opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai is not attending regional talks on Monday aimed at saving his country’s power-sharing deal as he did not have the necessary travel documents, a party official said.

Tsvangirai was due to meet on Monday with President Robert Mugabe and other Southern African regional leaders in the Swaziland capital Mbabane in a bid to break an impasse over forming a proposed unity government.

But Tsvangirai “did not go to Mbabane, as he was only issued an emergency travel document yesterday [Sunday], and the problem was that he did not have a valid visa to go to South Africa,” an official with the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) said on condition of anonymity.

The only way to travel to the Swazi capital from Zimbabwe is by passing through neighbouring South Africa.

“As we speak, the president is nowhere near Mbabane. He is still in the country right now,” the official said.

The negotiations bore little fruit on Sunday.

“There’s nothing wrong with deal, that’s why we signed. It’s only when it came to implementation that we ran into problems,” Tsvangirai told thousands of supporters at a rally.

“The past four days have been a dialogue of the deaf,” he said.

“It was one-man monologue. Mugabe does not negotiate. He just says ‘No.’ He was saying ‘No’ since Monday. We had to tell Mbeki it was no use continuing with negotiations with someone who does not want to negotiate,” said Tsvangirai. - AFP

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