Mugabe defends land reforms, attacks West
ROME (AP) - Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has made his appearance at a U.N. summit in Rome dealing with world hunger, defending controversial land reforms blamed for plunging his people into starvation.
Addressing the summit hosted by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization on Tuesday, Mugabe said the policy under which thousands of white-owned commercial farms were seized in 2000 was a quest for "equity and justice."
He blamed the subsequent meltdown of Zimbabwe’s economy on "hostile interventions" by "neocolonialist enemies" that have imposed "illegal and inhuman sanctions."
Western countries have slapped travel bans and asset freezes on Mugabe and his top aides. The ban does not apply to United Nations summits.