Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Phandu Skelemani, has reaffirmed government's position that it does not recognise Robert Mugabe as president of Zimbabwe and will not attend any African Union (AU) or SADC meetings if he is invited.
Answering questions from Members of Parliament (MPs) on Friday after giving a statement to the House, Skelemani said that Mugabe was not democratically elected, hence his leadership is illegitimate. He, however, said the government will recognise the outcome of the ongoing talks between Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai's party on transitional government to solve the country's economic and political crises. He said that the Botswana Embassy in Harare would remain operational since "it does not only service the government there but also the ordinary Zimbabweans". He said that government will screen all refugees entering Botswana and those qualifying for political refuge status will be assisted whilst economic refugees will be returned home.
In his statement, Skelemani said that the reasons for Botswana government not recognising Mugabe are clear in that environment in the run-up to the June 27 presidential run-off was not conducive for holding