Intervention call as Zimbabwe talks fail

Zimbabwe’s opposition leader claims four days of “intense” negotiations have failed to break the deadlock in power-sharing talks and called for intervention by regional and African leaders.

Zimbabwe’s opposition leader claims four days of “intense” negotiations have failed to break the deadlock in power-sharing talks and called for intervention by regional and African leaders.

Morgan Tsvangirai addressed reporters after talks with president Robert Mugabe ended late last night without resolving the impasse that has left Zimbabwe rudderless.

Former South African president Thabo Mbeki has been mediating talks since Tuesday.

Mr Tsvangirai said the parties had failed to agree on the allocation of key ministries. The opposition has accused Mr Mugabe of trying to retain too many key ministries.

Mr Tsvangirai said he was committed to a power-sharing agreement signed last month but called on the Southern African Development Community and the African Union to assist Zimbabweans in “crafting a way forward”.

Mr Mugabe, who left the Harare hotel where talks have been taking place a little later: said: “It (the discussions) went well ... in the wrong direction.”

He added that his party would make a detailed statement tomorrow.

Leaving some time later, Mr Mbeki struck a note of optimism and said talks had not failed.

“I wouldn’t say there is a deadlock,” he said. “The negotiations are continuing.”

He said the parties would attend a meeting of the Southern African Development Community in Mbabane, Swaziland on Monday to report on progress in the negotiations.

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