Switzerland praises Zimbabwe’s commitment to election agreements

The Swiss government has welcomed Zimbabwe’s adoption of a code of conduct for the country’s first elections following the departure of former president Robert Mugabe. Swiss diplomats advised on the drafting of the code since late last year.

At an official ceremony in Harare on Tuesday, all Zimbabwean political parties accepted their responsibility in the political process and agreed to respect the guidelines designed to prevent electoral violence.

In a press releaseexternal link, the Swiss government also wrote that it would continue to monitor the implementation of the code and help resolve disputes peacefully until the elections take place on July 30.

The Federal Department of Foreign Affairsexternal link (FDFA) provided technical expertise and support during the drafting stage of the electoral code of conduct at the request of Zimbabwe’s political parties.

Switzerland also invited Zimbabwean political leaders and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to Geneva earlier this year to meet experts, diplomats and mediators who could potentially provide assistance on preventing violence in an election context.

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The government will send three observers with the European Union Election Observation Mission to Zimbabwe, it said in the statement.

The FDFA’s mandate includes “promoting civilian peacebuilding, human rights and democracy, which Switzerland has been implementing in Zimbabwe since 2014”, the government wrote.

The southern African state is currently going through a transition period and the political climate has been marked by a recent attack at a campaign rally. Previous votes have also been marred by violence.