Britain Boycotts African Summit

Brown takes stand against torture, intimidation in Mugabe's Zimbabwe
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 20, 2007 4:45 AM CDT
Britain Boycotts African Summit
President Robert Mugabe greets party supporters at the Zanu PF headquarters in Harare, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2007. Thousands of war veterans marched in the streets of Harare in an effort to show solidarity with President Robert Mugabe who has been in power for 27 years and whose country is currently facing...   (Associated Press)

Britain will boycott a summit bringing together leaders of the European Union and  African states because of the expected presence of  Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe. Prime Minister Gordon Brown told the Independent  he wants to send a powerful message of concern to the leader responsible for widespread torture and the economic collapse of the once prosperous African nation.

Brown also cited Mugabe's intimidation of political opponents. The prime minister "is greatly concerned about the situation in Zimbabwe," said a spokesman. "This is a very serious situation." The Save the Children organization recently issued a report saying that children as young as 7 were fleeing Zimbabwe on foot in the hope of finding work and education in South Africa. (More Britain stories.)

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