Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrives in Zimbabwe to meet new friend Robert Mugabe

The MDC, partner of Mugabe’s Zanu-PF in a unity government, criticised the “unilateral” decision to invite Ahmadinejad, whose uranium enrichment programme and human rights abuses have made him a bogeyman in the west.

The MDC said: “His visit will definitely send a wrong message about the kind of company that we keep at a time when the people of Africa and the rest of the world have begun to see us as a nation working hard to restore democracy and good governance.” The party, which observers agree was robbed of election victory in 2008 by a campaign of violence and intimidation, drew parallels between Mugabe and Ahmadinejad’s strong-arm tactics.

The MDC said while the teetotal Ahmadinejad would be “wining and dining” in Zimbabwe, nine opposition activists in Iran faced death sentences for contesting the outcome of last year’s presidential election.

The party added: “Choice of friends defines character and inviting the Iranian strongman to an investment forum is like inviting a mosquito to cure malaria.”


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