Page last updated at 13:39 GMT, Thursday, 21 October 2010 14:39 UK

Forced evictions in Zimbabwe

MEPs have urged the proposed Zimbabwean ambassador to the EU to be sent home, during a debate on the country's human rights record.

British conservatives Nirj Deva and Charles Tannock said it would be a sign that the European Parliament would not tolerate the current forced evictions of thousands of people from shanty towns around the capital, Harare.

They are being evicted for failure to pay high lease renewal fees that have recently been imposed.

It comes five years after a similar eviction of thousands of people from their homes.

A number of MEPs have already written to Jose Manuel Barroso and Herman van Rompuy to reject Robert Mugabe's nomination of Margaret Muchada as ambassador to Brussels.

Dutch MEP Judith Sargentini said it was "deeply disappointing" that human rights were still being abused despite the unity government of Mugabe's Zanu-PF party and the former opposition MDC organisation.

Read more here at Democracy Live's guide to the European Parliament plenary sessions.

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