Germany terms Zimbabwean presidential elections "a farce"

Other News Materials 28 June 2008 17:55 (UTC +04:00)

The final round of Zimbabwe's presidential election with only one candidate was "a farce," German Foreign Minister Frank- Walter Steinmeier said Saturday.

"A run-off election without an opponent is a farce and incapable of providing legitimacy," Steinmeier said in Berlin, a day after voters in the southern African country went to the polls, reported dpa.

Steinmeier said the other foreign ministers in the Group of Eight (G8) took a similar view.

"The extent of the violence and intimidation surrounding the election yesterday reveals the depths that Robert Mugabe has led his country into," he said.

Zimbabwe urgently needed a new political and economic start, Steinmeier said, expressing confidence that this would be the message from the African Union summit that starts in Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt on Monday.

Steinmeier welcomed the decision by the UN Security Council to discuss Zimbabwe in the weeks ahead and said the European Union would consider what additional steps it could take.

South Africa, Zimbabwe's most powerful neighbour, late Friday blocked an attempt in the Security Council to have the election declared illegitimate.