Wednesday, 10 December 2008


Zambia's foreign affairs minister Kabinga Pande (RIGHT), flanked by his counterpart from defence George Mpombo stresses a point during a press briefing to deny allegations that Zambia and Botswana were planning to invade Zimbabwe.


THE Government of Zambia has denied reports that it has joined forces with Botswana to invade Zimbabwe and forcibly remove President Robert Mugabe from power.
Kabinga Pande is minister of foreign affairs. He said that the report, which was published on and dated 7 December 2008 was malicious because Zambia has committed to working within the framework of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) decision in resolving the situation in Zimbabwe.
He was speaking in the capital Lusaka, at a press briefing with his counterpart George Mpombo from the ministry of defence.
Mr Pande said the online report was malicious.
“I wish to add that Zambia is committed to the spirit of dialogue and co-operation which are enshrined in the regional and continental charters to which we are a state party,” he said.
Mr Pande said the government of Zambia believes that peace and stability in Zimbabwe could only be achieved through dialogue among the stakeholders.
Mr Pande said it was not feasible for Zambia to agitate for military invasion in Zimbabwe.
“These provocative insinuations should therefore be dismissed with the contempt they deserve as they are indeed baseless and false,” he said.
He said suspicions were that the website was created by Zimbabweans who were not living in that country.
And Mr Mpombo said that it was unthinkable for Zambia, which worked hard to liberate Zimbabwe to push for regime change through the use of force.
“The allegations are a complete political hogwash and there is no truth in these allegations. Our role is to help Zimbabwe overcome the problems and this is through dialogue and not as a way of military intervention. We can not move away from the SADC position,” he said.
In the article, it is alleged that Zambia’s commandoes at Mushili area of Ndola have been training in joint operations with the army in Botswana with the view of invading Zimbabwe.
The story quotes anonymous sources in Zambia. It adds that Zambians are equipped with AK 47 riffles and rocket launchers.

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