Archbishop calls for Mugabe's removal

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The Independent Online

The Archbishop of York today joined the growing chorus of calls for Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe to be removed from power as a cholera epidemic becomes the latest crisis to grip his stricken country.

Writing in The Observer, Dr John Sentamu said that Mr Mugabe should be brought to stand trial at the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

"The time has come for Mugabe to answer for his crimes against humanity, against his countrymen and women and for justice to be done," he said.

"The winds of change that once brought hope to Zimbabwe and its neighbours have become a hurricane of destruction with the outbreak of cholera, destitution, starvation and systemic abuse of power by the state.

"As a country cries out for justice, we can no longer be inactive to their call. Mugabe and his henchmen must now take their rightful place in The Hague and answer for their actions. The time to remove them from power has come."

Yesterday, Gordon Brown said that it was time for the international community to tell Mr Mugabe "enough is enough".

His words echoed similar calls in recent days by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South African Nobel Peace Prize laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Ugandan-born Dr Sentamu urged today's African leaders to follow the example of their predecessors who overthrew the infamous Ugandan dictator Idi Amin.

"Where are the African governments or leaders with the courage of Julius Nyerere, the former President of Tanzania, who ousted Idi Amin after recognising that his neighbour had become a tyrant and who marched an army into Uganda to bring an end to the killing fields?" he said.

"In Uganda, we were beaten, tortured, abused and hundreds were murdered, but never did we starve to death or see the level of suffering which is to be found in today's Zimbabwe."