THE European Union is easing its travel ban on Zimbabwe’s president, Robert Mugabe, while he serves as chairman of the African Union for the next year.
EU spokesperson Catherine Ray said Tuesday that the “ban will be lifted when he is traveling under his African Union chairmanship capacity.”
The EU imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe in 2002 over abuses linked to national elections, banning travel in Europe and freezing the assets of dozens of officials and business representatives.
The measures have been gradually lifted in recent years to encourage reform but the 90-year-old Zimbabwean leader and his wife Grace remain on the EU blacklist.
The role of rotating AU chairman is largely ceremonial. -Â Sapa-AP