In Zambia, the East German Head of State, Erich Honecker, on Wednesday (21 February) promised aid worth one and a half million U.
In Zambia, the East German Head of State, Erich Honecker, on Wednesday (21 February) promised aid worth one and a half million U.S. dollars to Joshua Nkomo's Zimbabwe African Peoples' Union (ZAPU). Reuters news agency reported the offer came at the end of an hour of talks Herr Honecker had with the Rhodesian black nationalist leader in Lusaka.
SYNOPSIS: Zambian President Kenneth Kaunda led the welcoming party when the East germans flew into Lusaka on Tuesday (20 February) on the third leg of their four-nations tour of Africa. Herr Honecker has been leading a delegation of seventy-six persons. East german sources said in Lusaka the main purpose of their tour was to strengthen bilateral ties, and to underline East german's commitment to liberation movements in southern Africa. They had previously been in Liba and Angola and were scheduled to go on to another two so-called frontline states -- Mozambique and tanzania.
A performance of indigenous dances was among the lighter aspects of the East German visit.
Herr Honecker's tour drew critical comment in London form the conservative Daily Telegraph newspaper. It said in an editorial on Wednesday (21 February) that the visit was on a scale calculated to impress the natives. The newspaper said the East Germans had for some time played a major role in organising and arming the guerrilla forces attacking Rhodesia and Southwest Africa (Namibia). Mr. Nkomo, here enjoying the entertainment with Herr Honecker, said later that East Germany had provided his ZAPU forces -- based in Zambia - with much material and educational aid. Reuters said this aid to ZAPU contrasted strongly with East Germany's flimsy relationship with Mr. Nkomo's Patriotic Front ally, Mr. Robert Mugabe, whose guerrillas are based in Mozambique.
Sources say most of Mr. Mugabe's military backing comes from China, and he has achieved little in trying to get arms from the Soviet Union and its allies.