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Zimbabwe opposition: We will re-establish ties with Israel if elected

Nelson Chamisa - Leader of the Movement for Democratic Change Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe's main opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change, promised yesterday to setup formal ties with Israel if it comes in to power.

On 30 July, Zimbabwe is to hold its first election since Robert Mugabe's downfall and leader of the Movement for Democratic Change Nelson Chamisa has vowed to open an embassy in Israel if his party wins. This would be a U-turn in a country which has limited diplomatic ties with Tel Aviv and which has hosted a Palestinian diplomatic mission since 1980.

"The countries have trade relations, with Israeli exports totalling more than $7 million in 2015, and Zimbabwe's exports — almost exclusively diamonds — totalling $13.8 million," the Times of Israel reported.

Mugabe ruled Zimbabwe for nearly 40 years and this will be the first election in which he does not run. New President Emmerson Mnangagwa is favourite to win against Chamisa,

Mnangagwa is 75, Chamisa is 40 and the contest is seen as a fight between the old guard of the 1970s independence war and a younger generation.

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