U.S. Expands Zimbabwe Sanctions

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U.S. President Barack Obama has signed an executive order consolidating U.S. sanctions against Zimbabwe. The new regime of sanctions bans donations of food, clothing and medical supplies by U.S. based entities to Zimbabwe without the authorization of the Treasury Department. In the order, Obama is quoted as saying allowing such donations would “seriously impair his ability to deal with the national emergency” for which the sanctions were imposed.

The sanctions have seen Zimbabwe go through a severe economic crisis that forced the government to switch to the U.S. dollar as it’s official currency in 2009. U.S. ambassador to Zimbabwe Bruce Wharton this week admitted that the sanctions had had a significant impact on Zimbabwe’s economy. “I think the question now is whether they still make sense. I also think that it’s very important for the United States to continue to review and revise those sanctions.” The revision, released by the Office of Foreign Assets Control, came a day later.

Between the Lines