HL Deb 11 February 1999 vol 597 cc33-4WA
Lord Acton

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they have made representations to the Government of Zimbabwe about the recent torture of Mr. Ray Choto and Mr. Mark Chavunduka; and, if so, what was the response. [HL819]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean)

The Government are shocked by the detention and apparent torture of Mr. Chavunduka and Mr. Choto by the military authorities in Zimbabwe, and applaud the prompt action by the judiciary in ordering Mr. Chavunduka's release. The Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs has sought assurances from the Zimbabwe Government that it will take swift action to investigate these serious allegations; and, if proven to be true, to bring the perpetrators to justice. We have also made representations on these lines with our European Union partners in Harare.

We await a response from the Government of Zimbabwe.