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Death Of American Anti-Sanctions Campaigner Divides Zimbabweans

22 August 2021

Zimbabweans are divided over the death of Gregory Turner, an American activist who was in 2015 jailed for campaigning against sanctions on Zimbabwe.

Some described Turner as a friend of Zimbabwe but some disagreed saying he just lobbied for the removal of sanctions yet he did not know the reasons why they had been imposed in the first place.


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The US and its allies that include the United Kingdom imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe at the turn of the millennium over "gross violation of human rights" during the fast-track land reform programme that dispossessed white farmers of their land.

They say the repressive measures will only be lifted when the government has implemented reforms that will enhance democracy in the country.

The ruling ZANU PF says the "illegal economic sanctions" were merely a tool to effect regime change.

H.E. Consul of Zimbabwe Ronny Levi Musan @RLFFHL tweeted announcing Turner's death. He said:

AN American activist, Gregory Turner, who was jailed for 15 months in 2015 for lobbying for the lifting of sanctions against Zimbabwe, has died.

RIP dear friend.

Pindula News presents some of the responses to the tweet.

Mwendo @Fambaiz

May his soul rest in peace!! He was against these imperialists who wanted to see the complete obliteration of livelihoods of ordinary citizens in Zim.

MakoromokwaZimba @makoromokwa

Okay, it's one of the guys who were making noise in the USA about sanctions imposed on Zim but not knowing the reason why they are imposed.

Tendai @conmut

How much money have we lost to these lobbyists? He made a cool $3 million, more of a con man than a “dear friend” (Tendai also attached a picture which suggests that the government paid Turner to participate in the anti-sanctions campaign.) Read the message on the picture:

A November 2008 "consulting agreement" provided for total payment of $3.4 million in fees for Turner and his co-defendant, Prince Asiel Ben Israel, to engage in public relations, political consulting and lobbying efforts to have sanctions removed by meeting with and attempting to persuade federal and state government officials, including Illinois members of Congress and state legislators, to oppose the sanctions.

MishMore @MishmoreMed

He was supposed to fight for human rights being violated in Zimbabwe by their own government...Unfortunately, he was completely lost on what he was fighting for. MHSRIP

Mkhatshwa Zwide @mkhatsh30719461

shem, he was fighting on behalf of our oppressor. may he rest in peace, nonetheless.

Idi Maunde Chiunduro @IdiChiunduro

May he rest in peace. We appreciate his love.

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