Burundi Establishes Body to Resolve Country’s Political Crisis
Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza has established a national commission, dedicated to ending the country’s violent political crisis.
The president set up the 15-member body on Friday, under the name of CDNI, at a ceremony in Gitega. The commission will be based in the capital of Bujumbura and its goal will be “to conduct the process of inter-Burundian dialogue across the country,” according to a decree.
Opposition dismisses commission
Opposition to Nkurunziza’s regime has dismissed the commission, established by the president, as a hollow public display. Burundi’s leader has refused to engage in dialogue with the UN and African mediators at every opportunity – and it will take more than a body set up by Nkurunziza to convince the opposition any progress is possible.
“We will ask our members to boycott all activities of the CNDI,” said leading opposition politician Charles Nditije.
“We need to discuss key issues such as the illegal third term secured by President Pierre Nkurunziza, security and the reopening of private media,” he said. National security has plummeted into crisis since Nkurunziza declared he would run for a third term as president.
Growing pressure on Nkurunziza
Nkurunziza’s government has firmly stated there will be no negotiations on his latest five-year term. It insists he will serve the full term as president before any new election takes place. However, the opposition condemns his role beyond the constitutional two terms and violence erupted in the country, as soon as he announced plans to run for a third term.
Burundi now sits on the edge of another civil war, with many contributors – including the European Union – having suspended small amounts of aid. The EU has threatened further action against the country, if a solution isn’t found, and the UN has imposed its own sanctions on key figures in the country.
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