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Zimbabwe court orders polls to go ahead July 31

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July 4, 2013 12:44 PM EST | AP


HARARE, Zimbabwe — Zimbabwe's highest court says crucial elections will go ahead on July 31 despite appeals from the former opposition in the country's shaky coalition to delay the poll.

Regional mediators had urged President Robert Mugabe to put off polls until Aug. 14 to allow for more democratic reforms and changes to electoral laws. Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku, head of the Constitutional Court, said Thursday the court unanimously ruled against delaying the vote.

Chidyausiku said elections will proceed on July 31. He said detailed reasons for the decision will be released later.

Former opposition leader, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, had applied for a 25-day delay from the July proclamation by Mugabe last month.

The regional leaders made their appeal to postpone elections at a special summit on Zimbabwe on June 15.