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World leaders must tell Mugabe 'enough is enough': Brown

world Updated: Dec 06, 2008 20:51 IST
HS Rao

Noting that the death of over 600 people in cholera epidemic in Zimbabwe has now become an international emergency, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Saturday said the world leaders must jointly tell President Robert Mugabe that "enough is enough".

Without explicitly calling for Mugabe to step down, Brown said world leaders should stand together to defend human rights and democracy in Zimbabwe.

He said over the coming days the first priority would be delivering aid to Zimbabwe, and medicines, rehydration and testing packs would reach those who need it, regardless of any differences with the country's President.

Brown said the crisis in Zimbabwe has become "an international emergency" and the UN Security Council should meet urgently to consider the situation.

"This is now an international rather than a national emergency," Brown said in a statement released by his Downing Street Office.

"International because disease crosses borders. International because the systems of government in Zimbabwe are now broken," he said.

Zimbabwe has been in political limbo since elections in March when the opposition wrested control of parliament from Mugabe's party.

Mugabe and opposition MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai, however, have failed to agree on sharing of ministries under a power-sharing government.

Brown said he had been in close contact with African leaders "to press for stronger action to give the Zimbabwean people the government they deserve".

In the week of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human rights, he said, "we must stand together to defend rights and democracy, to say firmly to Mugabe that enough is enough."

"The people of Zimbabwe voted for a better future. It is our duty to support that aspiration," he added.

Brown has joined a growing list of international leaders in condemning Mugabe. US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, said it was "well past time" for him to leave office.

Meanwhile, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Archbishop Desmond Tutu said African nations should come together to use military force if Mugabe refused to go.

Tutu said Mugabe had committed "gross violations" against Zimbabwe's people and ruined "a wonderful country."

His comments came a day after Kenya's Prime Minister Raila Odinga said African governments should oust Zimbabwe's leader.