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Cablegate: Burundi Arrests Fnl Splinter Group Leader

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DE RUEHJB #0430 1581539
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 071539Z JUN 07
FM AMEMBASSY BUJUMBURA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0355
INFO RUEHXR/RWANDA COLLECTIVE
RHMFISS/CDR USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC

UNCLAS BUJUMBURA 000430

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DEPT FOR AF/C AND DRL

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL BY
SUBJECT: BURUNDI ARRESTS FNL SPLINTER GROUP LEADER


1. Summary: (U) The Burundian police reportedly arrested
PALIPEHUTU-FNL splinter group leader Jean Bosco Sindayagaya
on June 1 during his meeting with an unnamed PALIPEHUTU-FNL
colleague at Chez Andre, a local Bujumbura restaurant.
Although a number of local radio stations have confirmed the
details of his arrest, there remains significant uncertainty
over the exact date and location of his apprehension.
Sindayagaya,s colleague, apparently an FNL party member with
no special position, was arrested as well. Both men are
reportedly being detained in the headquarters of the District
Prosecutor, Police Judiciaire des Paquets. There is no
further information regarding potential charges or the
anticipated length of their incarceration. End Summary.

2. (SBU) A police spokesman for the Ministry of Interior,
Ildephonse Mushwabure, told embassy officers that, three days
prior to Sindayagaya,s arrest, the ministry issued an edict
requiring any police officer immediately to arrest the rebel
leader should their paths cross. Mushwabure further explained
that, in the eyes of the Government of Burundi (GOB),
Sindayagaya does not represent the PALIPEHUTU-FNL and is
considered merely an outlaw,. The GOB is currently
negotiating the resumption of the Joint Verification and
Monitoring Mechanism (JVMM), born out of the September 2006
cease-fire agreement, with the PALIPEHUTU-FNL faction led by
Agathon Rwasa.

3. (SBU) Contrary to the media reports, the spokesperson for
the Ministry of Defense, Adolphe Manirakiza, indicated to
embassy officers that Burundi's Security Service arrested
Sindayagaya,s on May 31 in the Bujumbura community of
Kinundo. Manirakiza also claimed the headquarters of the
Security Services as Sindayagaya's original place of
detention but subsequently transferred to the Police
Judiciaire des Paquets. African Public Radio (APR) originally
conveyed a similar account but later reported Sindayagaya,s
arrest as taking place at Chez Andre restaurant on June 1.

4. (SBU) Comment: Sindayagaya and his followers reportedly
broke with PALIPEHUTU-FNL leader Agathon Rwasa in 2005.
However, the Government of Burundi has declined to negotiate
with this faction, and the group is not included in the
provisions of the September 2006 cease-fire agreement, nor in
plans for reintegration.
MOLLER

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