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Burundi

CrisisWatch Burundi

Unchanged Situation

East African Community (EAC) mediator former Tanzanian President Mkapa organised talks in Arusha, Tanzania 16 Jan between govt and some opposition politicians focusing on presidential term limit and formation of Govt of National Union; he did not invite main opposition coalition CNARED (National Council for the Respect of the Arusha Agreement, Restoration of the Rule of Law), but six members attended individually. Court of Appeal 16 Jan disbarred from Bujumbura Bar Association three lawyers and suspended another who had condemned human rights abuses. Following presidential pardon, govt released over 500 prisoners 23 Jan; said it would release some 2,500 in total. Unidentified gunman shot dead Water and Environment Minister Emmanuel Niyonkuru 1 Jan in Bujumbura. Govt 10 Jan said it would withdraw troops from AU mission in Somalia (AMISOM) following EU’s decision to pay troops’ salaries individually not via central bank, but reversed decision 21 Jan when EU agreed to pay via private banks.

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Reports & Briefings

In The News

7 Nov 2016
Mobile phones and social media maintain a link between many of Burundi’s constituent parts that appear steadily more remote and disconnected: the diaspora and the refugee camps, capital city and rural areas, Burundi and the rest of the world. The Guardian

Thierry Vircoulon

Senior Consultant, Central Africa
11 Oct 2016
The only thing that's important now, the only card to play at the moment, is to try and convince the neighbouring countries to put pressure on Burundi [to end the escalating violence]. RFI

Thierry Vircoulon

Senior Consultant, Central Africa
23 Sep 2016
Le discours de Bujumbura est un piège qui se referme sur lui. Iwacu

Thierry Vircoulon

Senior Consultant, Central Africa
23 Sep 2016
C’est toujours la même rhétorique que le régime utilise comme réponse quand il est mis en cause à Genève, New York ou Addis-Abeba Iwacu

Thierry Vircoulon

Senior Consultant, Central Africa
18 Aug 2016
Le régime burundais est en grande difficulté. Et le problème des gouvernements qui arrivent à bout d’arguments, c’est que ça mène à de plus en plus de violence. La Presse

Thierry Vircoulon

Senior Consultant, Central Africa

Latest Updates

Op-Ed / Africa

Three Lessons About Burundi’s Crisis from Speaking to Those Who Fled It

Burundi’s 327,000 refugees are not mere victims but also active citizens, many remaining actively engaged in the country’s problems.

Originally published in African Arguments

Op-Ed / Africa

The African Union Tried and Failed on Burundi. Now It’s Time to Try Again

Unless regional and international organisations act in concert and inject new life into the mediation process, Burundi risks igniting a wider crisis.

Originally published in African Arguments

Commentary / Africa

Insights from the Burundian Crisis (III): Back to Arusha and the Politics of Dialogue

When Burundians, and international mediators, finally meet in Arusha, they must remember the lessons of the last hard-won peace process more than a decade ago. The root causes of conflict in Burundi are political, not ethnic, and cannot be resolved by force. Compromise will be necessary, since neither the government nor the opposition have the means to win a definitive victory. Pursuing maximalist positions will only mean more hardship and bloodshed, which will further erode the real progress in reconciliation made since 2000. Genuine dialogue, addressing not only immediate problems but also fundamental political differences is needed to resolve the current crisis and chart a peaceful future for the country.

Op-Ed / Africa

Burundi turns to WhatsApp as political turmoil brings media blackout

Threats and harassment have driven journalists into exile, leaving social media to fill the void for those wanting to reach the world and connect disparate groups