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Belgium concerned about fresh targeted assassinations in Burundi


Brussels  –  The Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Didier Reynders, has expressed his country’s concern over the fresh targeted assassinations in Burundi, after the recent attacks that targeted senior national defence and armed forces officers.

“The violence, wherever it comes from, is unacceptable and pushes the country farther away from a negotiated solution to the crisis it is undergoing,’’ Reynders said

The minister added that the attacks underlined the urgency to reopen dialogue under international mediation.

Reynders stressed that only dialogue without preconditions or exclusiveness with the real stakeholders involved in the crisis would get the country out of the crisis.

He added that Gen. Athanase Kararuza, a senior Burundian army officer, was shot dead while dropping off his daughter at school on Monday, while his wife and daughter also died.

Reynders lauded the announcement by former Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa, as the facilitator of the East African Community (EAC)-led Burundian dialogue, that the next round of talks would take place from May 2 to May 6 in Arusha, Tanzania.

Burundi has known no peace since protests broke out in April 2015 after the ruling party announced that President Pierre Nkurunziza would seek a third term in office.

The protestors claimed Nkurunziza could not run for a third term in office but the country’s constitutional court agreed with the President.

An attempted coup on May 13 failed to depose Nkurunziza while he was out of the country.

He returned after the coup was put down, while opposition figures said there had been a general atmosphere of fear since then with killings, disappearances and widespread Human rights abuses. (PANA/NAN)

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