The Chinese government has officially addressed reports that it was involved in the events leading to the downfall of long-serving Zimbabwean leader, Robert Mugabe.
In a congratulatory message to Mugabe’s successor, Emmerson Mnangagwa, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said in a statement that the country’s strictly adhered to its policy of non-interference in the internal affairs of other states.
“It was planned long before and it was also approved by the former President Mugabe. China always upholds the principle of non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs and this remains unchanged.”
“We firmly support Zimbabwe following a path that supports its own national conditions and we believe, under the leadership of Mr Mnangagwa, Zimbabwe’s national development will make further progress.”
Fingers were pointing to China in the wake of the military takeover in Zimbabwe, which incident led to the resignation of president Robert Mugabe last week Tuesday.
Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) chief General Constantino Chiwenga returned from a trip to China to step into ruling party politics, at a time Mugabe allies were purging members loyal to Mnangagwa – at the time exiled former vice-president.
Other schools of thought said the Asian giants’ massive business interests in the southern African country was under threat with the bitter sucession fight between Mnangagwa and Mugabe’s wife Grace. The firing of Mnangagwa was seen as a way to allow Grace ascend to the vacant post.
China, however, insists that Chiwenga’s visit was a normal one and had nothing to do with the military action that forced Mugabe out after 37-years in charge.