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Zim’s land reform sore point for Annan

Itai Dzamara

ZIMBABWE’S chaotic land reform programme is among the areas of conflict on the African continent which the United Nations is trying to resolve through regional groupings, UN secretary-general Ko

fi Annan said in a report released recently.

Annan said the UN was working with the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) to unravel the crisis created by the land reform. The land issue is cites in the report released last week titled Causes of conflict and the promotion of durable peace and sustainable development.

“Sadc and the African Union have taken the lead in resolving the conflict in Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Sadc is also helping to find a solution for the issue of land in Zimbabwe,” Annan said in the report.

The UN, together with donor countries, is rendering technical and financial support to Sadc countries working on conflict resolution in the region.

“The report notes that while substantive progress is being made in tackling the scourge of conflicts in Africa and in laying the foundations and creating the infrastructure to deal effectively with the conflicts on the continent, some new trends and sources of conflict have emerged compounding existing challenges,” he says.

The new trends, Annan said, involved crisis of governance and democratic principles as well as unfair distribution of resources in politically sensitive situations.

The other countries mentioned by Annan as being embroiled in conflict are Angola, Burundi, Cote d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia and Sudan.

Annan said the UN was appointing mediators to solve the crises and relieve the tension.

“The appointment of special mediators remains the primary means by which the United Nations can assist member states in resolving conflicts. My special mediators, with the support of the department of political affairs, have been active in supporting regional peacemaking efforts,” he said.

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