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

 


Burundi Political Infighting Could Derail Country’s Peace...

14 May 2014

Burundi political infighting could derail country’s peacebuilding efforts – UN official

The political situation in Burundi remains tense with limited political space not conducive to protection of human rights, a United Nations envoy today told the Security Council today, warning that as the country approaches elections in 2015, there is a possibility of violence.

“In the approach of the election period, there is a propensity to political violence and confrontation between youths affiliated with political parties, reflecting the deleterious political climate,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Representative, Parfait Onanga-Anyanga, told the 15-member Council.

“To prevent exacerbation, we particularly recommended that the authorities intensify efforts to promote better political governance through dialogue and tolerance, while putting an end to impunity,” he continued, adding that it is also an urgent need to reduce the illicit flow of weapons into the small Central African country.

Mistrust that divides the Burundian political class is still manifesting itself in the negotiations and the adoption of the law in April that established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, said Mr. Onanga-Anyanga.

The law aims to investigate events in the largely inter-ethnic fighting between Hutus and Tutsis that erupted even before Burundi gained independence from Belgium in 1962.

“It is unfortunate that the passage of this important legislation to implement mechanisms of transitional justice has not [led to] overcoming the partisan divide,” he said, warning that the commission’s credibility and long-term prospects for reconciliation hang in the balance.

Burundi has been considered a UN peacebuilding success story. It was among the first, along with Sierra Leone, to be put on the agenda of the UN Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) when it was set up in 2006, to ensure that countries once ravaged by war do not relapse into bloodshed.

The UN Office in Burundi (BNUB) was set up in 2006 following a ceasefire between the Government and the last remaining rebel force to support peace consolidation, democratic governance, disarmament and reform of the security sector. Last month, the Council agreed that BNUB would wrap up at the end of this year, and transition to a UN country team (UNCT).

“In many ways, this is an historic moment, as it marks the beginning of the end of a stand-alone UN political presence in Burundi, in order to focus on development activities through a strengthened UNCT,” Mr. Onanga-Anyanga said, lauding the completion of a Joint Transition Plan presented today to the Council.

He said he also remains optimistic that despite the “disturbing facts mentioned here”, the Burundian people and Government would “overcome their differences and address, together common challenges.”

He urged calm and stressed that the country has all the assets to build a rich future “provided they finally turn back the demons of exclusion and violence.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN Health Agency Responds To Ebola Spike

UN health agency responds to Ebola spike by deploying team on border of Guinea and Guinea-Bissau More>>

UN Casts Israel As World's Worst Violator Of Health Rights

Israel's army team of medics recently treated 1,600 victims of the Nepal earthquake. More>>

W Thousands Flee Syria’s Besieged Historic City Of Palmyra

As thousands flee Syria’s besieged historic city of Palmyra, UN refugee agency readies response plan More>>

UN Agency To Halt Housing Allowance For Palestine Refugees

Lack of funds forces UNRWA to suspend cash assistance for housing for Palestinian refugees from Syria in Lebanon. Photo: UNRWA/Shafiq Fahed More>>


Bangkok: International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, Biphophia

BMA, UN, embassy representatives, civil society and artists stand united with LGBTI Thais on International Day against Transphobia, Homophobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOT) at Bangkok Art and Culture Centre More>>

Displaced Iraqis Face Difficulties As Fighting Continues

UNHCR is concerned about the processing arrangements in place at the Bzabz bridge – a series of pontoons across the Euphrates River which marks the boundary between Anbar province and the capital, Baghdad. Photo: UNHCR/G. Ohara More>>

UNESCO Chief Condemns Killing Of Bangladeshi Blogger

Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova. UN Photo/Devra Berkowitz The head of the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom worldwide today voiced ... More>>

Philadelphia: Train Crash

Five people have been confirmed dead and more than 136 people injured after an Amtrak train crashed in Philadelphia today at 9.20pm local time.More>>

UN News: Alarming Surge In Bay Of Bengal Crossings

The number of irregular migrants crossing the Bay of Bengal has almost doubled over the past year amid a dangerous uptick in human smuggling and trafficking across the region, according to a new report from the United Nations refugee agency. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news