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Vigil Diary 26-07-2008 PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 26 July 2008 20:14
Another big Vigil: people are very anxious about the talks underway between the MDC and Zanu-PF. We were told by the MDC that talks would not take place until the violence was ended and political prisoners were released – and then found that talks were taking place anyway. Everyone at the Vigil was shocked at the sight of Morgan Tsvangirai shaking hands with Mugabe but we trust that the MDC leadership realises that there will be no help from the West to rebuild Zimbabwe unless Mugabe is side-lined and his evil cronies ousted from power. If necessary we will still be protesting outside the Embassy if a MDC minister visits London to try and get aid for a government in which Zanu-PF pulls the strings.

The Vigil was briefed about a meeting this week with Tibetan exile groups in London to discuss a protest against China planned for Friday, 8th August, the day the Olympic Games open in Beijing . As we reported last week we have already had discussions with the Burmese and we hope for a big joint protest against China 's support for dictators.

More and more people are coming to the Vigil, around 30 – 50 new people every week. It is apparent there is need to explain the Vigil's relationship with Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR), our partner organization on the ground in Zimbabwe , and the Zimbabwe Association, with whom we work closely in London . We've written a clarification (see below).

Some time back a film-maker contacted the Vigil wanting a Zimbabwean to take part in a short video called ‘the Father'. Doubt Chiminyo, a long-term supporter of the Vigil, agreed to star in the film. You can see the video by clicking on the link in the right hand column on this website: Zimbabwe Protest Videos.

It was one of the hottest days of the year in London and the sight of the day was a wedding couple in full gear riding past down the Strand in a rickshaw drinking champagne.

The Glasgow Vigil reports a successful day last Saturday. Their Vigil was well-supported by the public and at a post-Vigil meeting supporters discussed ideas for further activism.

For latest Vigil pictures see the link in the updates column. Additional excellent photos from Luke Cody , an Australian photographer who visited the Vigil, are posted on the following link.

FOR THE RECORD: 185 signed the register.

FOR YOUR DIARY:

•  Next Glasgow Vigil. Saturday 2nd August, 2 – 6 pm Venue: Argyle Street Precinct. For more information contact: Ancilla Chifamba , 07770 291 150, Patrick Dzimba, 07990 724 137 or Jonathan Chireka, 07504 724 471.

•  Protest outside the Chinese Embassy. Friday, 8th August. More information as plans develop.

•  Zimbabwe Association's Women's Weekly Drop-in Centre. Fridays 10.30 am – 4 pm. Venue: The Fire Station Community and ICT Centre, 84 Mayton Street , London N7 6QT, Tel: 020 7607 9764. Nearest underground: Finsbury Park . For more information contact the Zimbabwe Association 020 7549 0355 (open Tuesdays and Thursdays).

Clarification
Apart from the Vigil there are 2 other organisations that operate at the Vigil on Saturday afternoons: Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) and the Zimbabwe Association. There has been confusion about the relationship of the 3 organisations so a clarification is outlined below.
The Zimbabwe Vigil: the Vigil is a non-party political group of human rights activists who protest weekly on Saturday afternoons outside the Zimbabwe Embassy, London . To be a member of the Vigil all you have to do is attend on Saturday afternoons (and sign the register if you wish to). There is no cost for joining the Vigil and you do not have to be a member of the other two organisations.
ROHR: is the Vigil's partner organisation based in Zimbabwe . ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organisation on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil mission statement (see above) in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fund raises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe .
The Zimbabwe Association is a member of the Zimbabwe Vigil Coalition and is a support group for Zimbabwean refugees and asylum seekers. They offer members help and advice on asylum matters and have been responsible for a long-running campaign to stop detention and removals of Zimbabweans in the UK . There is a small annual fee for membership. For more information check: www .zimbabweassocation.co.uk.
NB the 3 organisations support each other but operate separately as far as support for individuals is concerned.
 

How can you help?

The Zimbabwe Vigil exists entirely on donations from the public and well wishers. You can help us by donating via a deposit into our account Thank you.