|STATEMENT ON THE CONTINUATION OF THE SUSPENSION OF
ZIMBABWE FROM THE COUNCILS OF THE COMMONWEALTH
We, the SADC members of the Commonwealth supported by some members of the Commonwealth, wish to voice our strong disagreement with the decision not to allow Zimbabwe back into the Councils of the Commonwealth as reflected in the Abuja CHOGM Statement on Zimbabwe.
We are concerned that the matter of Zimbabwe's participation seems to have been prejudged, considering the pronouncements made by some members prior to the finalisation of this matter.
This decision will do nothing to assist the people of Zimbabwe overcome their present difficulties. As we warned, it has resulted in Zimbabwe withdrawing from the Commonwealth.
The present situation in Zimbabwe calls for engagement by the Commonwealth and not isolation and further punishment. We reaffirm our determination to continue to assist the people of Zimbabwe.
We also wish to express our displeasure and deep concern with the dismissive, intolerant and rigid attitude displayed by some members of the Commonwealth during the deliberations. The Commonwealth has always operated on the basis of consensus. We fear that this attitude is destined to undermine the spirit that makes the Commonwealth a unique family of nations. This development does not augur well for the future of the Commonwealth.
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