An opposition leader in Zimbabwe has called for international monitors to oversee the forthcoming elections, which are due to be held next month. The current parliament is meeting for the last time today, before being dissolved. All but three of the seats are held by the ruling ZANU-PF party. The occupation of up to a thousand white-owned farms is continuing. A high court action is being taken by the farm owners, who want police to evict the squatters, who, in turn, want to take over the land.

No date has been set for fresh elections. There are fears that, with parliament no longer sitting, a political vacuum could develop that would add to unrest surrounding the land ownership dispute. White landowners have accused President Robert Mugabe of trying to boost his support ahead of the elections by supporting squatters who have occupied their lands. At a meeting in Luxembourg, European Union Foreign Ministers called on the authorities in Harare to restore law and order and to allow free and fair elections to take place.