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Vol 55 No 14

Published 11th July 2014


Arms-for-platinum deal

The governing ZANU-PF has found a way to trade platinum rights for Russian weapons to replace those it lost in Congo

Zimbabwe is to boost its inventory of Russian strike aircraft after concluding a US$3 billion platinum-for-arms deal with Russia. The government is desperate to replenish its armaments, many of them lost in the Congo-Kinshasa war when Zimbabwe intervened to save the late Laurent-Désiré Kabila's regime from insurgents in 1998-2002. The country could not replenish its lost military hardware due to an arms embargo which the European Union and the United States imposed, in 2002 and 2003 respectively, in response to high levels of political violence, human rights violations and intimidation by security forces and activists from President Robert Mugabe's Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF).

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