Zimbabwe may impose treason charges against PM Tsvangirai over Wikileaks revelation

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Harare, Dec 28 (ANI): Zimbabwe is considering bringing treason charges against Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and other individuals over confidential talks to US diplomats leaked by the whistleblower website 'Wikileaks'.

A cable dated December 24, 2009 suggested that Tsvangirai had privately insisted sanctions "must be kept in place".

The Guardian quoted Johannes Tomana, the attorney general, as saying that he would appoint a commission of five lawyers to examine whether recent disclosures in leaked US embassy cables has breached the constitution.

"With immediate effect, I am going to instruct a team of practising lawyers to look into the issues that arise from the WikiLeaks. The WikiLeaks appear to show a treasonous collusion between local Zimbabweans and the aggressive international world, particularly the United States," Tomana said.

He further said that treason charges in Zimbabwe could even lead to a death sentence.

Meanwhile, media reports have claimed that hardline supporters of President Robert Mugabe want an official inquiry into Tsvangirai's discussion of international sanctions with the US ambassador in Harare.

According to the memo, the Movement for Democratic Change leader "acknowledged that his public statements calling for easing of sanctions versus his private conversations saying they must be kept in place have caused problems."

"If necessary, he said, he and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara can quietly meet with western leadership to develop a plan on the issue of sanctions. He said that he and Mutambara have decided to take this issue out of the hands of the negotiators and handle it personally," it added.

Last week, Mugabe's Zanu-PF party had said that the government should draft a law that makes it a treasonable offence to call for sanctions. (ANI)

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