Addis Ababa – The African Union (AU) has in a statement on Saturday in Addis Ababa welcomed the inter-Burundian dialogue scheduled for Dec. 28 in Uganda.
It reiterated its call on the Burundian Government to urgently consent to the deployment of the planned African Prevention and Protection Mission in Burundi (MAPROBU).
The statement said that Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Chairperson of the AU Commission, had continued to closely follow the situation in Burundi and efforts aimed at finding an early and peaceful solution to the current crisis.
It said in this context, the Chairperson had welcomed the resumption of the inter-Burundian dialogue in Entebbe, Uganda, on Dec. 28, under the auspices of President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda.
She called on all the Burundian stakeholders to extend full cooperation to the mediation and to place the interest of their country and its people above any other consideration.
The Chairperson reiterated that only a genuine and truly inclusive dialogue would enable the Burundian stakeholders to overcome the current challenges.
In a letter to Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza, Dlamini-Zuma stressed that AU had no other agenda than to assist the Government and people of Burundi at their hour of need, consistent with its commitment to promote African solutions to African problems.
She expressed AU’s readiness to rapidly initiate discussions with the Government of Burundi to devise the best ways and means of facilitating the deployment of the mission, in a spirit of mutual understanding and cooperation.
The Chairperson has also written to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, to convey the AU’s call for full UN support.
Since April, violence has left over 400 dead in Burundi, according to civil society groups.
Last week, the AU Peace and Security Council passed a resolution on the deployment of 5,000 troops to prevent massive killings or genocide taking place in Burundi without the government’s consent.
The Burundi government has rejected the AU resolution, saying the deployment would be unnecessary as Burundi troops were capable of protecting the people.(Xinhua/NAN)