The London conference on Zimbabwe Rhodesia struck major problems on Friday (19 October) with all three sides rejecting the other's proposals for ending the seven year old bush war and arranging new elections.
MV Nicholas Fenn (Foreign Office Spokesman) speaking
SV Members of press listening
CU AND MV Mukome (Zim-Rhod Foreign Secretary) speaking
MV Press listening
CU Eddison Zvobgo (Patriotic Front) speaking (2 shots)
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 1: FENN: "Bishop Muzorewa then made a statement in which he referred to the elections which had taken place in his country. We have held, he said, free and fair elections in Zimbabwe Rhodesia. Every sane objective person has accepted those elections as free and fair. He went on to say that the Lusaka accord nonetheless called for new elections. he said that his delegation had sheepishly accepted that call as one way of including all the people of Zimbabwe in the process of independence.
The Salisbury viewpoint was presented by Zimbabwe Rhodesia's Foreign Secretary, DAVID MUKOME.
SEQ. 3: MUKOME: "As far as the Bishop is concerned he has had a transitional government already and has carried out free and fair elections which have been accepted by 57 out of 58 observers as being free and fair and as far as we are concerned after this whole excercise is over we shall go into an excercise of implementing the new Constitution. As far as the election is concerned the British have proposed that they intend to set up an election council and this is just a proposal. I cannot say we've accepted or rejected that one, we have not even got started on that discussion, we will see how that thing goes.
MR EDDISON ZVOBGO spoke for the Patriotic Front.
SEQ. 5: ZVOBGO: "The last speaker here, members of the other delegation of the Salisbury delegation conveyed to you the impression that they'd not conceded and accepted the matter of the holding of free elections, free and fair elections. It is a matter of public record now that the leader of their delegation today speaking in plenary said that and I quote We have sheepishly accepted the holding of another election. He has used the word sheepishly twice. Lord Carrington this morning attempted in the process of enumerating some of the prerequisites for such an election to put the question to the Patriotic front whether we accepted the holding of a free and fair election. The Patriotic Front made a very sharp retort to the effect that we have over the years and we alone have over the years urged for the holding of such an election even long before the British advocated them in Rhodesia. It goes without saying that the Patriotic Front did not think it was funny for any person to try to lecture them on the need for a free and fair election in Rhodesia.
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Background: The London conference on Zimbabwe Rhodesia struck major problems on Friday (19 October) with all three sides rejecting the other's proposals for ending the seven year old bush war and arranging new elections. Bishop Abel Muzorewa rejected out of hand British proposals that the present biracial parliament in Salisbury be dissolved in the lead up to new elections, while the Patriotic Front criticised British plans for a two month transitional period between a ceasefire and the elections. On the British side, Lord Carrington spoke out against the Patriotic Front's demands on election procedures and their call for a United Nations presence during the transition. The new problems emerged just at the three sides were talking again after a deadlock over the proposed constitution. At the end of Friday's talks British spokesman Nicholas fenn released details of the discussions.