New Delhi: It is finally time for Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe to go or that is what the US and most of the international community is saying.
The US is withdrawing support from Mugabe's power-sharing deal with opposition leader Thabo Mbeki. Speaking to the media at Washington on Sunday, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said there was widespread agreement among the international community that Mugabe has to go now.
Criticising Mugabe's misrule, Rice said the international community needs to act on the political unrest and health epidemics in Zimbabwe. She also expressed concern over state-sponsored terrorising of civilians.
"I was just at the United Nations last week. We talked about Zimbabwe. This is another circumstance in which most of the international community, including several African states like Botswana and the leadership of Kenya, are saying that the regime of Robert Mugabe has got to go," she said.
"You have a cholera epidemic there. You have a humanitarian disaster in terms of food. You have the goons of the Mugabe regime going around and detaining people and frightening people, terrorising people. Again, the international community in that circumstance needs to act," Rice added.
The new US stance will put pressure on Zimbabwe's neighbours - South Africa in particular - to abandon Mugabe.
However, South Africa maintains that it would not do anything that would lead to a total collapse of Zimababwe and more instability in the region.