The 16 countries comprising the Southern African Development Community called for Oct. 25 to be a Day of Action against the illegal sanctions on Zimbabwe. The day was made a public holiday in Zimbabwe, where tens of thousands of people demonstrated.
In New York City, the December 12th Movement answered SADC’s call by declaring “Zimbabwe will never be a colony again!” They called a demonstration in front of the United States Mission to the United Nations. People then marched through the streets to the Zimbabwe Mission to the U.N. to show their solidarity with the embattled African country.
D12 members distributed a leaflet titled “Western sanctions are weapons of mass destruction.” It told the truth to people on the street, as follows:
“Sanctions are economic weapons of war and mass destruction. Their purpose is to destroy governments that do not submit to domination by Western political and economic interests. Their target is mainly former colonies who seek to break from Western dominance to advance the interests of their own people.
“Their main methods: Economic terrorism—to make a country’s economy ‘scream’ to destroy the quality of life of its people. Regime Change—create an opposition, financed and owned, to replace that current leadership.
“In Zimbabwe, where the liberation war freed their people from colonial rule, they dared to take back and redistribute land stolen. An act that threatened the continued exploitation of Africans not only in Zimbabwe, but Africa in general.
“For two decades, the United States and European Union have enforced sanctions against Zimbabwe in direct response to their land reclamation program. Sanctions, which have denied Zimbabwe access to international loans, financing and importation of vital medical, agricultural, industrial and chemical goods. The exact needs for running a country and insurance against disasters and crisis.
“Sanctions, which have attacked Zimbabwe’s currency, to undermine their ability to purchase goods at fair prices, while at the same time frightening away trade because of economic instability.
“The West also created an opposition. The MDC (Movement for Democratic Change), whose singular mission is to return land back to white farmers and the economy back to the West. To be accomplished by calling for more Western sanctions, violent/terroristic actions and a mass international propaganda campaign of lies and half-truths.”
The African countries demanding the lifting of sanctions against Zimbabwe include Angola, Botswana, Comoros, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe diplomat speaks
On the evening of Oct. 25, the December 12th Movement International Secretariat and Friends of Zimbabwe held a Zimbabwe Anti-Sanctions Day meeting at Sistas’ Place in the Bedford Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn. Among those who came was a delegation from Zimbabwe’s mission to the U.N., New York City Council member Inez Barron and New York State Assembly member Charles Barron.
Omowale Clay of the December 12th Movement welcomed people to the meeting. He called Oct. 25 “a day of African unity.” Clay reported that people in Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, demonstrated against the sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe.
A moment of silence was held for two comrades from the December 12th Movement who have passed away: Robert “RT” Taylor, who served as chief-of-staff of the December 12th Movement and was the son of December 12th Chairperson Viola Plummer; and Field Marshall Coltrane Chimurenga, who was buried in the Harare Provincial Heroes’ Acre in Zimbabwe.
Vincent Verdree spoke from Friends of Zimbabwe. He declared that the U.S./EU “sanctions are an act of war.” A video was shown explaining the impact of sanctions on Zimbabwe.
A highlight of the meeting was Deputy Ambassador Nyagura of the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Zimbabwe to the U.N.
She said that Zimbabwe has lost $42 billion in 18 years because of the cruel sanctions. That’s almost $2,500 stolen from each person in Zimbabwe.
The deputy ambassador reported that it was the “most vulnerable” who were most affected. These include patients needing kidney dialysis.
There’s no credit and banks have been sanctioned by the U.S. for having financial dealings. These are truly acts of war against an African people that dared to take back their land from white settlers.
But as Deputy Ambassador Nyagura declared, “The land issue is irreversible.”
New York City Council member Inez Barron and New York State Assembly member Charles Barron also denounced the sanctions.
U.S. hands off Zimbabwe!