New cash rules spark Zimbabwe bank chaos

Tens of thousands of Zimbabweans queued for money today after the government raised the limit on daily bank withdrawals.

New rules went into effect allowing withdrawals of up to 20,000 Zimbabwe dollars, the equivalent of about €21. The old 1,000 Zimbabwean-dollar limit was barely enough to buy a newspaper.

The limits, and spiralling inflation, had meant long queues at banks most days, but today was extraordinary with traffic unable to negotiate some Harare streets.

President Robert Mugabe returned from a 10-day trip to the United Nations today.

The 84-year-old leader who has ruled for nearly three decades was greeted by a large crowd of singing and dancing well-wishers at the airport.

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