“Deliver us from Evil” march


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Leading clerics were planning to hold prayer events in Harare and Bulawayo under the banner “Deliver us from Evil”.

The prayers would be offered for open political dialogue, political stability, good rains and food for all, real peace and prosperity for all, HIV/AIDS, truth justice and reconciliation, violent free democratic society, new and old farmers, and end to corruption, and free and fair elections.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 04HARARE495, DELIVER US FROM EVIL”: NATIONAL PRAYER EVENT SET

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

04HARARE495

2004-03-22 15:46

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

221546Z Mar 04

C O N F I D E N T I A L HARARE 000495

 

SIPDIS

 

AF/S FOR S. DELISI, L. AROIAN, M. RAYNOR

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR J. FRAZER, D. TEITELBAUM

LONDON FOR C. GURNEY

PARIS FOR C. NEARY

NAIROBI FOR T. PFLAUMER

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/22/2009

TAGS: PHUM PGOV PREL ZI

SUBJECT: “DELIVER US FROM EVIL”: NATIONAL PRAYER EVENT SET

FOR MARCH 27

 

 

Classified By: Political Officer Win Dayton under Section 1.5(b), (d)

 

1. (U) Involving broad participation from leading clerics

around the country, an ecumenical day of prayer is being

planned for March 27. Under a banner “Deliver Us From Evil”

in a March 21 advertisement in the independent weekly

Standard, the Zimbabwe National Pastors Conference and

Christians Together for Peace and Justice invited the public

to two events — a two-hour session at the City Sport Center

in Harare and a three-hour event at St. Mary’s Catholic

Cathedral in Bulawayo. The announcement states that prayers

would be offered for open political dialogue, political

stability, good rains and food for all, real peace and

prosperity for all, HIV/AIDS, truth justice and

reconciliation, violent free democratic society, new and old

farmers, and end to corruption, and free and fair elections.

 

2. (C) The event has been planned quietly for months.

Clerics involved have told us that the participation has been

wired down to the congregation level and they expect

participation from church leaders throughout the region,

including clerics from South Africa, Kenya, Malawi, Lesotho,

Mozambique and Botswana. Catholic Bishop Pius Ncube told the

Ambassador March 22 that the organizers were undecided on

whether to march from the Catholic Cathedral to the Anglican

Cathedral in Bulawayo. He said he had argued strongly

against it, noting that such a march would violate draconian

anti-assembly laws and give the GOZ pretense to arrest or

even commit violence against the throng. He asserted that

they would be safe in the cathedral and said he thought a

permit had been obtained for the Harare event. Ncube said

the organizers are planning to gauge the atmosphere of the

Bulawayo crowd on March 27 and make a decision at the venue.

 

3. (C) COMMENT: Assuming the meetings proceed, The

Ambassador plans to attend the Harare gathering and a poloff

will be present at the Bulawayo meeting. We are quietly

suggesting other diplomatic missions send representatives as

well. If authorities did issue a permit for the Harare

event, it is quite likely they will retract it after seeing

the tenor of the advertisement. Whether one or both events

is held or not, their organization appears to have reached

critical mass and poses a tactical challenge to GOZ. Since

last June’s stay-away, the GOZ has generally done whatever

was necessary to stem any momentum for mass expression of

dissent without regard to public relations concerns.

SULLIVAN

(11 VIEWS)

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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