Cape Town – The US-Africa summit to be convened by President Barack Obama in August is set to proceed without Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe as planned, US ambassador to Zimbabwe Bruce Wharton has reportedly said.
According to The Herald, Wharton said although the US sought to normalise relations with Zimbabwe, Mugabe was not invited to the high-profile summit.
Obama invited at least 47 leaders to the landmark summit which seeks to widen US trade development and security ties with the African continent.
The invited African countries are only those that are currently in good standing with the United States or are not suspended from the African Union.
The US indicated in January that Mugabe won't be attending because he is currently a "Specially Designated National" (SDN).
A Specially Designated Nationals List is a publication of Office of Foreign Assets Control (Ofac) which lists individuals and organisations with whom US citizens and permanent residents are prohibited from doing business.
Mugabe is also subject to US sanctions for undermining democratic processes and institutions in Zimbabwe.
Mugabe’s administration has, however, indicated it is not bothered by the veteran leader’s exclusion.
Mugabe’s spokesperson George Charamba, was early this year quoted as saying Obama’s decision to snub Mugabe was an indication that the summit was not about the US and Africa, but about the US and certain African countries.