Any visit by Annan to Zimbabwe should be carefully planned - UN spokesman

Report
from UN News Service
Published on 01 Aug 2005
Any visit to Zimbabwe by Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan should be carefully planned in order to achieve its main objectives of alleviating human suffering and addressing social, economic and political challenges, a UN spokesman said today.

Mr. Annan has accepted "in principle" an invitation from Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe following the release of a UN report calling the evictions of up to 700,000 people in the southern African country a "disastrous venture" carried out with "indifference to human suffering" and with "enormous" humanitarian consequences.

"He's not about to jump on a plane," spokesman Stéphane Dujarric told the noon daily briefing. "As we've said in the past, he's agreed in principle, but the trip should be carefully planned in order to achieve its main objectives.

"The visit needs to contribute to the alleviation of human suffering and assist in addressing the social, economic and political challenges in Zimbabwe," he added.