14 July 2017

Burundi Opposition Calls On UN Envoy to Start Inclusive Negotiations

Photo: IRIN / Phil Moore
(file photo).

The United Nations' Special Envoy to Burundi yesterday concluded the first round of consultations between the Government of Burundi and civil society present in the country. The envoy, former interim president of Burkina Faso, Michel Kafando, expects to present results of his meetings to the United Nations Secretary General on 26 July.

In Bujumbura from 7 to 13 July 2017, Kafando met various actors involved in the inter-Burundian political dialogue led by the former Tanzanian President, William Benjamin Mkapa. His mission is to improve the talks initiated by the East African Community, of which Burundi is member.

After his first visit to Burundi from 27 to 29 June 2017, Kafando met Mkapa to discuss the situation.

Kafando noted firm commitment on both sides and a significant step forward in efforts to resolve the political crisis. He expressed optimism about the outcome of the ongoing political dialogue, according to sources in his office. He also said he hoped for inclusive dialogue in order to increase the chances of achieving constructive and lasting results.

"UNSG Special Envoy will report the real situation in Burundi"

The Government of Burundi welcomes Kafando's visit. "We hope that he knows the real situation in Burundi, which is different from what some international organizations report on Burundi," says Philippe Nzobonariba, the Secretary General and spokesperson for the Burundian Government.

The platform for Burundi political opponents in exile, CNARED, has called on Kafando to do his best to start inclusive negotiations to restore peace in Burundi. "Kafando does not work on instructions from the Government of Burundi. He must accomplish the mission entrusted to him by the United Nations," says Jeremie Ndikumana, the spokesman for CNARED.

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