Zimbabwe says it will return seized farms to their white owners. Most of the farms were taken over during violent protests to redress colonial-era land seizures.
The farm seizures, which affected about 3500 farmers, began in the year 2000. They damaged relations with western donors and contributed to an economic collapse.
The return of the farms is “an important step in repairing relations with western nations and avoiding international judgements against Zimbabwe worth hundreds of millions of pounds,” noted BBC.
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The new plan involves removing some black farmers who received land under late President Robert Mugabe’s takeover program, and give them back to hundreds of mainly European farmers whose investments were protected under international agreements.
However, thousands of local white farmers will only receive compensation for lost assets, excluding the land.
The United States government has made compensating farmers one of the requirements before it lifts decades of economic sanctions.