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Zimbabwean opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai says he hopes a power-sharing deal would work, but that there was a problem of trust between him and President Robert Mugabe.

Mr Mugabe and MDC leader Mr Tsvangirai failed again to agree on a cabinet after four days of talks mediated by former South African president Thabo Mbeki which ended on Friday (local time).

Both sides have asked the Southern African Development Community (SADC) of regional countries, which appointed Mr Mbeki to mediate, to intervene in the dispute.

“The reason we are going to SADC is we want the deal to work. We are hopeful that something positive will come from the SADC meeting on Monday,” Mr Tsvangirai said.

Mr Tsvangirai said Mr Mugabe had been totally intransigent on power-sharing proposals.

“The past four days have been a dialogue of the deaf,” Mr Tsvangirai told thousands of supporters at a rally in Zimbabwe’s second city Bulawayo and opposition stronghold.

“It was one-man monologue. Mugabe does not negotiate. He just says ‘No.’ He was saying ‘No’ since Monday. We had to tell Mbeki it was no use continuing with negotiations with someone who does not want to negotiate.”

Mr Mbeki said he would travel with the Zimbabwean leaders to Swaziland on Monday, where the three-member SADC security body will try to find a solution.

“There’s nothing wrong with the deal, that’s why we signed. It’s only when it came to implementation that we ran into problems,” Mr Tsvangirai told thousands of supporters at a rally in Zimbabwe’s second city Bulawayo and opposition stronghold.

The sticking point in the talks appears to be the Home Affairs portfolio and control of the police.

Both men want it and are refusing to budge from their positions and that has left the deal in desperate need of resuscitation.

The power-sharing deal is seen as Zimbabwe’s best hope for rescuing an economy where fuel and food are scarce and inflation stands at 231 million percent, the world’s highest.

Mr Mugabe, Mr Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara, leader of the smaller MDC faction, will take part in the troika meeting of the leaders of Angola, Mozambique and Swaziland, Mr Mbeki has said.

AFP/Reuters

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