View Full Version : Army On Alert To Prevent British Invasion: Zimbabwe

11-21-2007, 08:50 AM
Army on alert to prevent British invasion: Zimbabwe


2 days ago

HARARE (AFP) — Zimbabwe said Monday it had put its military on high alert against a possible British invasion after the former armed forces chief of its old colonial master revealed London had considered such a move.

"We are aware of plans by Britain to invade our country and assassinate our leaders and we are not going to lie down and take this as just threats," deputy information minister Bright Matonga told AFP.

"We take these threats seriously and our armed forces are always on high alert. We are aware and confident of our capability and we will deal with them swiftly and effectively if they dare invade our territory."

Matonga's comments come after the former head of the British armed forces, Lord Charles Guthrie, revealed in a newspaper interview that the possibility of invading Zimbabwe had been discussed during Tony Blair's premiership.

Guthrie said that "people (in Blair's administration) were always trying to get me to look at" the possibility of invading the southern African country.

"My advice was: 'Hold hard, you'll make it worse. You won't have a single African country on your side'," he told the Independent on Sunday newspaper earlier this month.

Matonga said that Mugabe, in power since the former Rhodesia won its independence in 1980, had been on Britain's hit-list for a long time.

"They have always targetted African leaders opposed to their imperialist policies and they want to do that with President Mugabe. But we have a robust army ready to defend the country and its leaders."

Zimbabwe's relations with Britain were strained after Zimbabwe launched controversial land reforms in 2000, seizing farms from white farmers -- the majority of them of British descent -- to give to black farmers.

Mugabe was one of Blair's most virulent critics before the British premier stood down in June, frequently accusing him of trying to force regime change and telling him to "keep his pink nose" out of Zimbabwe's internal politics.