South African official says Zimbabwe faces no sanctions or invasion
An invasion of Zimbabwe or tougher sanctions to dislodge President Robert Mugabe are not on the cards, a senior official in South Africa's ruling party said in Durban on Thursday.
"I don't think invading Zimbabwe or sanctions would work," African National Congress (ANC) Secretary General Gwede Mantashe told journalists and editors at a breakfast in Durban, dpa reported.
He did not believe that the ANC "will subscribe" to an invasion and preferred to deal with Zimbabwe "on a government-to-government level and on a party-to-party level."
"What will we do to make Mugabe retire? We will persuade him."
He said the higher structures of the ANC had discussed Mugabe's reasons for wanting to stay in power.
The arrest of former Liberian president Charles Taylor was affecting any decision Mugabe may make to retire.
Taylor, who was Liberia's president from 1997 to 2003, was forced into exile in Nigeria before being extradited. He is currently being detained at the International Criminal Court detention facility in The Hague and is on trial before the Special Court for Sierra Leone.
"The Hague has taken a number of African people. Mugabe can't be given any guarantees for his safety in retirement," said Mantashe, who claimed Mugabe's fears were real.
He said the party's national executive committee had discussed the fears that Mugabe might be facing if he were to relinquish power. He said no Western leader had been detained or had stood trial in The Hague.