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Mugabe liable to pay damages for violence

A United States federal court ruled that President Robert Mugabe, as the first secretary of the Zimbabwe African National Union- Patriotic Front, was liable to damages related to the political violence in the run up to the 2000 parliamentary elections.

The case had been taken to the US courts by Movement for Democratic Change activists who had either been victimised or whose relatives had been caught up in the violence in the run-up to the elections.

The judgement was in default. Previously, the Zimbabwe government had appealed through the United States ambassador in Harare to have the case dropped.

In an editorial after the default verdict, the Herald said the judgment was a typical example of American arrogance towards the rest of the world.

“But we all know that the meaning of justice and fair play has a different interpretation in America to that of the rest of the world. Otherwise, where else in the world would a learned judge pass such judgement without giving audience to the other party?” the paper queried.

 

Full cable:


Viewing cable 01HARARE3301, MEDIA REPORT – NEW YORK COURT DECISION ON

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

01HARARE3301

2001-11-05 13:24

2011-08-30 01:44

UNCLASSIFIED

Embassy Harare

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

051324Z Nov 01

 

 

 

UNCLASSIFIED     PTQ1601

 

PAGE 01       HARARE 03301 051421Z

ACTION INR-00

 

INFO LOG-00   NP-00   AF-00   A-00     ACQ-00   CIAE-00 DODE-00

DS-00   EUR-00   UTED-00 VC-00   TEDE-00 LAB-01   L-00

VCE-00   NSAE-00 NSCE-00 TEST-00 USIE-00 IIP-00   DSCC-00

DRL-02   NFAT-00 SAS-00     /003W

——————39F925 051421Z /38

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0201

INFO AMEMBASSY PRETORIA

AMEMBASSY LUSAKA

AMEMBASSY WINDHOEK

AMEMBASSY GABORONE

AMEMBASSY LILONGWE

AMEMBASSY LONDON

UNCLAS HARARE 003301

 

SIPDIS

 

AF/PD FOR COX, ROBERTSON, AF/S FOR KRAFT, AF/P, INR/R/MR,

NSC FOR JENDAYI FRAZER

 

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: ZI PREL PHUM

SUBJECT: MEDIA REPORT – NEW YORK COURT DECISION ON

PRESIDENT MUGABE AND ZANU-PF.

 

 

1.   THE GOVERNMENT-CONTROLLED DAILY “THE HERALD” DEDICATED

ITS NOVEMBER 3 EDITORIAL TO THE RECENT DEFAULT JUDGEMENT

AGAINST PRESIDENT ROBERT MUGABE ISSUED BY AN U.S.

FEDERAL COURT. THE RULING THAT PRESIDENT ROBERT MUGABE,

IN HIS CAPACITY AS THE FIRST SECRETARY OF THE RULING

ZANU-PF PARTY, IS LIABLE FOR DAMAGES RELATED TO

POLITICAL VIOLENCE IN ZIMBABWE WAS NOT WELL RECEIVED BY

THE PAPER.   UNDER HEADLINE “U. S. COURT’S RULING

DEFIES LOGIC,” THE PAPER COMMENTS:

 

2.   “THE RECENTLY PASSED U. S. FEDERAL COURT’S RULING

DECLARING THAT PRESIDENT MUGABE CAN BE SUED IN THAT

COUNTRY AS THE FIRST SECRETARY OF ZANU PF, DEFIES ALL

LOGIC AND IS A TYPICAL EXAMPLE OF AMERICAN ARROGANCE

TOWARDS THE REST OF THE WORLD. . . BUT WE ALL KNOW THAT

THE MEANING OF JUSTICE AND FAIR PLAY HAS A DIFFERENT

INTERPRETATION IN AMERICA TO THAT OF THE REST OF THE

WORLD. OTHERWISE, WHERE ELSE IN THE WORLD WOULD A

LEARNED JUDGE PASS SUCH JUDGEMENT WITHOUT GIVING

AUDIENCE TO THE OTHER PARTY? ANY PROPERLY CONSTITUTED

COURT WITH THE DESIRE TO UPHOLD THE INTERESTS OF JUSTICE

WOULD, BEFORE HEARING SUCH A CASE, EQUIP ITSELF WITH

UNBIASED EVIDENCE OF THE SITUATION ON THE GROUND ON THE

GIVEN COUNTRY. . . IN THIS CASE IT SEEMS THE PRESIDING

JUDGE ALREADY HAD A PRECONCEIVED IDEA ABOUT ZIMBABWE AND

SAW IT FIT TO DISREGARD THE RULES OF JUSTICE. DESPITE

THE LAID-DOWN RULES, THE U. S. COURT ISSUED A DEFAULT

JUDGEMENT AGAINST ZANU PF WITHOUT ENSURING THAT THE

RESPONDENT HAD BEEN PROPERLY SERVED. . . THEREFORE,

SINCE IT IS QUITE APPARENT THAT SERVICE WAS NOT PROPERLY

EFFECTED, THE COURT SHOULD HAVE REFUSED THE HEAR THE

MATTER. . . .”

 

UNCLASSIFIED

 

PAGE 03       HARARE 03301 051421Z

SULLIVAN

 

UNCLASSIFIED

 

>

 

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