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Many Zimbabweans Plan Mass Exodus To Neighboring Countries

By Can Tran     Jun 21, 2008 in World
As expected and anticipated many Zimbabweans are preparing for a mass exodus from the country as it prepares for its runoff election on June 27.
As the country of Zimbabwe prepares for the runoff election due to take place next week on June 27, it would seem that President Mugabe’s Zanu-PF party supporters, mobs, and militiamen have continued to step up their brutal, bloody, and violent attacks on members and supporters of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party. This is the clearest indication that Mugabe is going to do whatever it takes to remain in power.
However, the international community is planning to take action. African leaders one by one have started to abandon Mugabe, who has sworn never to cede power to opposition candidate and MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai. Since the March 29 elections, members and supporters of the MDC have been systematically hunted down and brutally executed. It shows that Mugabe is desperate to remain in power.
Mugabe could also be faced with war crimes before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the near future.
Many in Zimbabwe have been threatened with death if they do not vote for Mugabe. Mugabe had threatened to plunge Zimbabwe into a civil war if he does not win. He accuses Tsvangirai of being an “imperialist puppet” of Britain.
Top US diplomat to Africa, Jendayi Frazer, said that Tsvangirai won outright. She accused Mugabe of trying to steal the election. The results show that Tsvangirai did not win outright and lacks the needed majority to avoid a runoff election. But, Mugabe’s government has been criticized for withholding results for weeks.
As the violence escalates, Tsvangirai might consider dropping out of the runoff election.
Now, the people of Zimbabwe have their own way of “voting.” Instead of going to the polls on June 27, many Zimbabweans are planning a mass exodus into neighboring African countries. Countries such as South Africa, Zambia, Botswana, and Mozambique are preparing for a mass exodus from Zimbabwe to their borders.
UNCHR has prepositioned food and tents in all these places in the expectation of a flight of more refugees,” said a UNCHR senior official. The UN is preparing for such a mass exodus. It has criticized Mugabe’s Zanu-PF party for the violence.
Mugabe said that only a divine force could kick him out of office.
In regards to the exodus, Tsvangirai says that the Zimbabweans need to keep the hope alive and show up at the polls.
More about Mugabe, Tsvangirai, Zimbabwe