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FinalCall.com Special Coverage

FCN WEBCAST
Press Conference
by the Hon. Minister
Louis Farrakhan
Washington, D.C.

June 17th, 2002

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PRESS CONF.
TEXT TRANSCRIPT

 

See Below For
Updates & Links


Birth of the
African Union

July 14, 2002

 
Transcript of
Min. Farrakhan's Appearance On CNN
July 14, 2002
 
Farrakhan corrects Iraqi news report
Interview Transcript with NBC Affiliate
 07-10-2002
 
Sanctions are killing Iraqi people
 07-09-2002
 
An appeal for a fair U.S. policy toward Iraq
Minister Farrakhan's
Press Statement

 07-05-2002 (Iraq)
 
Minister Farrakhan delivers Friday lecture as guest of Grand Mufti of Syria, Sheik Ahmad Kuftaro 07-05-2002
 

Farrakhan received by Syrian President Assad
FCN 07-03-2002

 

Muslim leaders welcome Minister Farrakhan
FCN 07-02-2002

 

Qatar Farrakhan ‘disappointed’
with Bush plan

FCN News 06-27-2002

 

Full Press Conference Transcript  w/ Q & A
June 17, 2002

Peace Initiative: Africa & Middle East Tour

 

Understanding Minister Farrakhan's Middle East and African Peace Mission BlackElectorate.com
06/26/2002

 

Community offers prayers and support of Farrakhan mission
FCN News 06-25-2002

WEB POSTED 07-24-2002
Farrakhan supports Zimbabwe land resettlement program
by Askia Muhammad
White House Correspondent

 
HARARE (FinalCall.com)—Despite withering propaganda attacks in the West, and targeted sanctions which limit the travel of Zimbabwe government officials and even political supporters of President Robert Mugabe in the West, the country’s "fast track" land resettlement program will continue and it will enjoy the support of the Nation of Islam, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan pledged in a two-hour meeting here July 13.

"With the help of Allah, we believe we will be successful (with an historic Peace Mission to Africa and the Middle East), as we believe you will too, if the people have the resolve to stay the course and not compromise their valuable principles, in spite of the negativity and the hostility," Min. Farrakhan told Pres. Mugabe.

"You might want to give in, but you should not give in for the sake of your children and your grandchildren. You must stay the course," said Min. Farrakhan.

The controversial land reform program—which has targeted vast land holdings of more than 30 million acres, more than the size of Belgium, in the hands of just 4,000 White farmers for redistribution to millions of landless Blacks—is aimed at correcting historical injustices, Mr. Mugabe pointed out.

While unsympathetic European critics complain about what they call "seizures" of the land from White farmers—most of whom are the descendants of British and South African colonial settlers—they never mention that the land was originally taken by force from the indigenous Africans in the first place, Mr. Mugabe said.

During the meeting with Min. Farrakhan, Pres. Mugabe recited the history of the armed struggle to topple the entrenched colonialists as well as the two-week-long 1979 negotiations at Lancaster House in London, which led to a peace agreement. The major sticking point in those talks, Mr. Mugabe pointed out, was the issue of land resettlement.

A pledge of financial assistance from U.S. President Jimmy Carter sealed the land deal by making up for the otherwise inadequate amount that British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher offered the new government in order to buy the land from the European settlers. Ironically, Pres. Mugabe said, the settlers took the land by force from the original African occupants, never compensating them for that stolen land.

The debate over the land reform question never discusses some of the enormous land holdings of multiple tracts held by members of Britain’s House of Lords, or by White South Africans like Nick Oppenheimer, said Pres. Mugabe.

Mr. Oppenheimer, for example, is the scion of South Africa’s DeBeers diamond company, and the Anglo-American gold and nickel mines. Those operations alone control as much as 40 percent of neighboring South Africa’s economy. In addition, Mr. Oppenheimer personally owns more than 320,000 acres—an area equal to nearly half the size of the entire state of Rhode Island—on several farms in Zimbabwe.

The government insists on one farm per owner, and that there can be no more absentee land owners. These are among the regulations to which White farmers object.

Despite a fierce anti-Mugabe opposition political movement funded by Europeans, no one should reverse the land reform program because it has become the cornerstone of peace and potential prosperity, Min. Farrakhan told reporters following a visit to the National Heroes Acre, where he laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

"From what I have seen and observed, the soldiers who fought for the liberation of this country should take everything which they fought for day and night during the war of liberation. The West should not worry when the war veterans take their land because the land belongs to the ordinary people of Zimbabwe.

"It will be a sin to God if the government ignored those who spearheaded the land reform program," Min. Farrakhan continued, according to a published report. "Long life to the war veterans because they are the vanguard of the liberation struggle."

Toward the goal of regional steadfastness, Pres. Mugabe said that Southern Africa’s former liberation movements—ZANU in Zimbabwe, SWAPO in Namibia, Frelimo in Mozambique, and the ANC in South Africa—have begun to meet and to strategize among themselves in order to counter the negative forces mounting against them from the former colonial powers to surrender their economic authority and their sovereignty over their own land and resources.

"We want you to know of our great admiration and respect for you, and our prayers that God will keep you healthy and strong that you may see this revolution through to completion, and if not that whoever succeeds you will, as you have laid the foundation for them to do," Min. Farrakhan told Mr. Mugabe who is now 78- years-old.

President Mugabe was a former school teacher before he joined the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) in 1960 as it launched its armed struggle. He holds several college degrees and he has led this country since its independence in 1980.

"We appreciate the solidarity to the common cause that brings us together," Pres. Mugabe told Min. Farrakhan in response to the Nation of Islam leader’s pledge of support.

The Rev. Al Sampson, a member of Min. Farrakhan’s peace delegation, presented Pres. Mugabe a copy of the Original African Heritage Bible, published in 1993. The Rev. Sampson was one of the Black theologians and scholars who researched the original Biblical texts in order to produce an authentic and more accurate scripture than the commonly used King James Version.

"In the Original African Heritage Bible there is a commandment from God to ‘possess the land, be strong and of good courage. Do not move to the right or to the left for the land is your land.’ I signed the book encouraging the President, in his quiet moments, to read Joshua I, verses 1-18," the Rev. Sampson told The Final Call.

He is pastor of Fernwood United Methodist Church in Chicago, which participated in an important United Nations pre-independence conference of Zimbabwe liberation movements in 1978. His worldwide United Methodist Church supports the largest seminary on the continent of Africa—the African University, outside Harare.

"This was a 25-year dream come true," the Rev. Sampson said, expressing his gratitude to Min. Farrakhan especially for bringing him to this country, "to know that I did not sell out and to visit Zimbabwe and to present this Bible on behalf of brothers and sisters in America who fought to support the brothers and sisters here on the soil."

Photo: Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan is received by President Mugabe of Zimbabwe during recent Peace Mission (Credit: Kenneth Muhammad)


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