World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Burundi: Retaliation For Gatumba Massacre Looms

Burundi: UN Peacekeeping Chief Warns Against Retaliation For Gatumba Massacre

The United Nations peacekeeping chief today warned those making bellicose statements in the wake of the massacre of nearly 160 Congolese Tutsi refugees in the Gatumba transit centre in Burundi last weekend to avoid the danger of spiralling violence and go back to the path of reconciliation.

Statements made by the chief of staff of Burundi's Armed Forces (FAB) and others envisioning retaliation could set off a chain of troop movements, Under-Secretary-General Jean-Marie Guéhenno of the UN Department of Peace-keeping Operations (DPKO) told journalists.

His remarks came after briefing the Security Council in closed session on the latest developments in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Burundi. In May the Council authorized a peacekeeping force for Burundi, known by its French acronym ONUB, with a maximum of 5,650 military personnel. The force has received just over 3,000 troops so far.

"Gatumba must not lead to a cycle of revenge," Mr. Guéhenno warned. "The aim must be justice, not revenge."

The danger of violence in the region is high, he said, stressing that "all leaders [must] step away from the brink."

In the national transitional government in Kinshasa, some people were not fully reconciled to the developments in the Congolese Rally for Democracy-Goma (RCD-G), he said.

RCD-G members have suspended their membership in the National Assembly over various disagreements.

In addition, he said, the issue of the Democratic Liberation Forces of Rwanda (FDLR), Hutu extremists also known as the Interahamwe and blamed for the 1994 massacre of Tutsis and moderate Hutus in Rwanda, should be resolved once and for all because they have been "motivated by an ethnic agenda that is a poison in the region."

One of the problems the UN faced in the Great Lakes region was a lack of what the military called "enabling units," he said. DPKO has said previously that it lacks the teams that provide such services as movement control, communications, terminal support, air-traffic control, aircraft loading and unloading, petroleum handling and water processing.

Mr. Guéhenno called on member States with those capabilities to contribute their expertise to UN peacekeeping.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Gordon Campbell: Is This Guy The World’s Most Dangerous Thirtysomething?

Saudi Arabia has long been regarded as a pillar of stability in the Middle East, and is the essential caterer to the West’s fossil fuel needs. It is also the country that gave us Osama Bin Laden, al Qaeda, and 15 of the 19 terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks... More>>


Non-Binding Postal Vote: Australia Says Yes To Same Sex Marriage

Binoy Kampmark: Out of 150 federal seats, 133 registered affirmative totals in returning their response to the question “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?”. More>>


Bonn Climate Change Conference: Protecting Health In Small Island States

The vision is that, by 2030, all Small Island Developing States will have health systems that are resilient to climate change and countries around the world will be reducing their carbon emissions both to protect the most vulnerable from climate risks and deliver large health benefits in carbon-emitting countries. More>>


Camp Shut Down: Refugees Must Be Rescued From Manus

On 31st October 2017, the detention centre on Manus Island in which the Australian Government has been holding more than 700 refugees was closed, leaving those living there in a desperate situation. More>>



Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>


  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC