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Thursday, 9 March, 2000, 13:11 GMT
UK recalls Zimbabwe commissioner

The UK is to recall its High Commissioner from Zimbabwe for consultations after diplomatic bags were opened.


Peter Hain: "Grave breach"
UK Foreign Office minister Peter Hain said the incident at Harare was a breach of international diplomatic law.

Mr Hain said : "This is a grave breach of the Vienna Convention.

"I have summoned the Zimbabwean High Commissioner to protest at this unprecedented action. It is a matter of the most serious concern. It is not the act of a civilised country.

"The level of paranoia with which Zimbabwe views the international community could not be more amply demonstrated than by its need to open a diplomatic bag without our consent and against all international law."

Mr Hain said the bag contained "protective screening equipment for communications as well as the tools for its installation" which was routine equipment at diplomatic missions.

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