"Once this process has been completed, the process of verification of the presidential ballots will also commence tomorrow," he said.
 
Solidarity
 
At a press conference in South Africa on Monday, Arthur Mutambara, the leader of the second faction of the MDC, said: "There will be no division amongst ourselves vis-a-vis the resolution of the Zimbabwean crisis."

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"I'm here to show solidarity to the winner of the presidential election in Zimbabwe," he said, referring to Tsvangirai.

The two MDC factions together control 109 seats against 97 seats in favour of Zanu-PF, according to results from the March 29 elections.

Tsvangirai also proclaimed himself the winner of the presidential election held on the same day.

He said that Mugabe should concede the presidency.
 
Results from the presidential vote have still not been released by the authorities.

But an election official said on Monday that a partial recount of the presidential election has been completed and verification of the results will start on Tuesday.

 

UN call

At the press conference in Johannesburg, Tsvangirai called on the United Nations to "send a special envoy to investigate this violence and recommend a way to resolve the issue".

"What has transpired is a militarisation of our country. We have requested that the UN must deal with this matter," he said.

The MDC says 15 of its supporters have been
killed since the March elections [AFP]
The MDC says at least 15 people have been killed and scores more have been arrested since the presidential poll.

On Sunday, Louise Arbour, the UN's senior human rights official, expressed alarm over post-election violence that she said could undermine efforts to overcome the country's political crisis.

"I am particularly concerned about reports of threats, intimidation, abuse and violence directed against NGOs, election monitors, human rights defenders and other representatives of civil society," Arbour said in a statement released in Geneva.

"The information I have received suggests an emerging pattern of political violence inflicted mainly, but not exclusively, on rural supporters of the opposition MDC party," she said.

"If serious and systematic human rights violations persist, they will undermine national and regional attempts to defuse the present political crisis," Arbour added.

Mugabe accuses his critics of plotting with Western nations to end his 28-year rule.

Today, Zimbabweans face severe shortages of basic goods and an inflation rate of 165,000 per cent - the world's highest.