In an exclusive interview with VOA Zimbabwe, Shava said, “If the people of Ethiopia approach the government of Zimbabwe, appropriate steps will be taken by the Government of Zimbabwe in response to the request, to the legitimate request from the government of Ethiopia.”
This marks a shift in policy as in an interview with VOA in 2009, Zimbabwe’s late former Information Minister, Tichaona Jokonya, said Harare was not going to extradite Mengistu.
Said Jokonya, “Mengistu came to Zimbabwe as a fugitive; he came as a refugee, and under the United Nations convention, a refugee is protected in the country he flies to.”
Mengistu was sentenced to death in 2008 in absentia after fleeing to Zimbabwe in 1991 following his ouster. He was charged with genocide, homicide, illegal imprisonment and property seizures.