The people of Zimbabwe recently went to the polls to elect a new president. According to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, incumbent President Emmerson Mnangagwa of the ruling Zanu-PF party won the July 30 election by a narrow margin. But the opposition said the results are fraudulent and has challenged the results in court.
This election presented Zimbabwe with an historic chance to move beyond the political and economic mismanagement of the past and toward democratic change. The Zimbabwean people turned out massively to cast their votes, underscoring their aspirations for a better future, despite challenges during the pre-election period.
Unfortunately, according to international observers, while election day itself was peaceful, the period directly after was marred by violence and disproportionate use of deadly force by security forces against protestors. The United States extends its condolences to the families and friends of those killed and injured and calls on the leaders of all parties and their supporters to act peacefully.
The United States welcomed the commitment by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to release comprehensive and transparent election results, said State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert. The United States will continue to review the data collected by its own observation teams, by international observation missions, and by local observers to make a complete assessment of the overall election.
“We encourage all stakeholders and citizens to pursue any grievances peacefully and through established legal channels,” said Ms. Nauert, “and we encourage all political leaders to show magnanimity in victory and graciousness in defeat.”
The United States remains focused on working with Zimbabwe as its people and government strive toward still-needed comprehensive electoral, political, economic, and human rights reforms.