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Norway's statement on Burundi

Mr President,

Norway is very concerned about continued rise in violence, and serious human rights violations in Burundi. The inflammatory and ethnically charged language that sporadically is voiced in the context of the political crisis is reminiscent of the nations historical tragedies. We are gravely concerned about the credible reports of human rights violations and abuses committed by both state and non-state actors. All parties must exercise restraint and do their utmost to avoid further violence. The crisis can only be resolved through inclusive political dialogue. Dialogue between government and opposition must be resumed.

The political crisis in Burundi has resulted in more than a quarter million refugees to the neighbouring countries. Several hundred people have been killed, and in addition to the human suffering the crisis threatens the political stability of the region. The government of Burundi is responsible for the protection of political and civil rights of all its citizens.

Norway commends the efforts of the East African Community, under the leadership of President Museveni and former President Mkapa in its attempts to foster dialogue with all political parties to resolve the crisis in Burundi. We encourage all parties to engage constructively, without pre-conditions in the talks led by the East African Community.

Norway commends the UN Security Council’s resolution 2279 of 1 April 2016, requesting options for United Nations police deployment to monitor the security situation in the country. Norway urges the Government of Burundi to engage actively and fast-track the deployment of such a police force in line with the alternatives laid out by the UN Secretary General. 

We urge the Burundian authorities to cooperate fully with the international community, including the United Nations, the African Union and the EAC. The resumption of an inclusive, inter-Burundi regionally-mediated dialogue is absolutely essential for a comprehensive political solution.

Thank you