AFP | July 3, 2008

The United States on Thursday formally submitted a sanctions resolution in the UN Security Council that would target Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and 11 of his aides.

US Ambassador to the UN Zalmay Khalilzad told reporters here that he hoped that the text, which would also impose an arms embargo on the Harare regime, would be voted upon by the 15-member council next week.

“We have proposed a resolution that would impose targeted sanctions on those who are responsible for the political crisis, with the expectation and hope that that they will be incentivized to cooperate (in) resolving the crisis of legitimacy,” he noted.

The text would slap an assets freeze and a travel ban on Mugabe, Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono, Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa and nine others for their role in abetting the state-sponsored violence against the opposition, repressing human rights or undermining democracy.

It was introduced after Mugabe claimed victory in a one-man runoff presidential election last Friday that was marred by state-sponsored violence against the opposition.

Zimbabwean opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai had pulled out of last Friday’s run-off, saying nearly 90 of his supporters had been killed and thousands injured in violence he blamed on pro-Mugabe militia.

Tsvangirai had defeated Mugabe in the first round of the presidential election on March 29, but official vote totals showed him just short of an outright majority.

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