US State Department daily press briefing- Zimbabwe

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U.S. Department of State
Daily Press Briefing Index
Thursday, June 11, 2009
12:46 p.m. EDT

Briefer: Ian Kelly, Spokesman

ZIMBABWE

— Secretary Had Productive Meeting with Prime Minister/U.S. to Support Efforts of Government of Zimbabwe towards Full Implementation of Global
Political Agreement/Finding Ways to Ease Suffering of Zimbabwean People Without Bolstering Forces Clinging to Corruption and Oppression/Focus on
Rebuilding Zimbabwe and Providing Better Future for Its People

— U.S. Wants to Set Benchmarks for Governments Receiving Taxpayer Funds/Looking at Ways to Make sure Zimbabwe Continues on Democratic Path

— Concerns About Mugabe and Examples of Misrule and Corruption/Future of Government a Matter for Zimbabwean People to Decide

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE

DAILY PRESS BRIEFING

THURSDAY, JUNE 11, 2009

(ON THE RECORD UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED)

12:46 p.m. EDT

QUESTION: Zimbabwe.

MR. KELLY: Oh, Zimbabwe, sorry. A read-out of the Secretary’s meeting,
just hold on a second.

We had a very productive meeting with the prime minister. We’re looking to support the efforts of the Zimbabwean Government towards the full
implementation of the global political agreement and find ways to ease suffering of the Zimbabwean people without bolstering those forces that are clinging to corruption and oppression. With the prime minister and reform-minded members of his government, we desire to focus on rebuilding Zimbabwe and providing a better future for its people.

QUESTION: Does that mean that you’re prepared or you’re considering restoring development aid?

MR. KELLY: We look forward to working with the Zimbabwean Government on a bilateral basis, also a multilateral basis, to see how they can move
towards a better, more democratic future.

QUESTION: Right. But are you considering restoring development aid?

MR. KELLY: We’re looking at ways that we can help Zimbabwe on that path.

QUESTION: How?

MR. KELLY: Including development aid if it’s appropriate.

QUESTION: And —

QUESTION: Earlier this week, Assistant Secretary for African Affairs Carson said that the United States was very concerned by the lack of reforms undertaken by the Zimbabwean Government and that any substantial increases in assistance – obviously, we’re talking not humanitarian assistance —

MR. KELLY: Yeah.

QUESTION: — were not going to be possible until there were such reforms. Is that still the position of the U.S. Government, that you need to see much more in terms of broad Zimbabwean reform before you can restore things like substantial development aid?

MR. KELLY: Well, I mean, we’re very hopeful about the direction that Zimbabwe is taking under the Global Political Agreement. I think that in general, worldwide, we want to make sure that we have set benchmarks for governments that are receiving U.S. taxpayer funds, that we get the most out of every taxpayer dollar. So yes, I think it’s fair to say that we’re looking at ways to make sure that Zimbabwe stays on a – or continues on a democratic path.

QUESTION: Ian, what’s the U.S. Government’s view on the continuing role of President Robert Mugabe as head of state?

MR. KELLY: Regarding President Mugabe, I think that we’ve had concerns about examples of misrule and corruption. But I think that in terms of
the future of the Zimbabwean Government, I think that’s really a matter for the Zimbabwean people to decide.

(End Excerpt)

(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S.
Department of State. Web site: http://www.america.gov)

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