ZIMBABWEâ€™S ruling elite is set to be slapped with a raft of new European Union (EU) and United States (US) sanctions.
This follows last weekâ€™s failure by the US and Britain to have a sanctions resolution on Zimbabwe adopted by the United Nations Security Council as China and Russia vetoed the move.
US president, George Bush, on Tuesday said the US was looking at ways to punish the countryâ€™s leaders.
Diplomatic sources told the Zimbabwe Independent this week that the US and the EU were coming up with a cocktail of sanctions, among them barring Air Zimbabwe from landing or flying over their territories.
The sanctions, the sources said, would also target government institutions, corporations and individuals.
The proposed ban on Air Zimbabwe would have serious repercussions on the national airline which generates most of its revenue from the Harare-London route.
“The US and EU countries will come up with a new raft of tough sanctions which they believe will punish Mugabe for holding the widely discredited presidential election run-off,” one of the diplomats said. “The measures are not yet public but the EU and the US have completed drafting them.”
The proposed sanctions against Zimbabwe complement Canadaâ€™s new embargoes on the Zimbabwe government.
On June 29, Canadaâ€™s Foreign Affairs minister David Emerson, announced the new sanctions, which include restrictions on travel, work and study for senior government, military and police officers and forbidding Zimbabwean flights from landing in or flying over the country.
The US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Jendayi Frazer, on Tuesday told senate that her government was working with European and African countries to exert pressure on Mugabeâ€™s government.
However, it could not be established which African countries were working with the US government, but countries such as Botswana, Liberia, Kenya and Zambia have expressed outrage at the manner Mugabe retained power. The diplomatic sources said other measures include sending back to Zimbabwe children of Zanu PF officials who are studying and working abroad.
By Loughty Dube