Burundi crisis update

An update of the situation in Burundi following the attempted military coup.

The military coup staged by three senior army officers in Burundi has reportedly failed. Fierce fighting broke out in the capital Bujumbura early on Thursday following the announcement by coup leader General Godefroid Niyombare that President Nkurunzia and his cabinet had been ousted. According to his spokesman, President Nkurunzia, who had been attending a summit in Tanzania regarding the current security situation in Burundi, has returned to the country and remains in power.

Three leading officials behind the coup were arrested on Friday, however General Niyombare remains on the run. Escaping from Bujumbara, Niyombare admitted failure to a local news agency, adding “I hope they won’t kill us.” Thursday’s attempted coup was met by heavily armed opposition from the military and police loyal to the President. Five soldiers were reportedly killed during the fighting.

The violent protests and conflict on the streets of Bujumbura, suffered since the announcement of President Nkurunzia’s intention to run for a third presidential term, threatens an already fragile peace agreement signed in 2006. The accord signalled the end of a bloody 12 year civil war in which an estimated 300,000 Burundians lost their lives. President Nkurunzia’s decision was seen by some citizens and international observers as unconstitutional. Despite fears of further violence throughout the country, Nkurunzia says that the election – scheduled for this month – will go ahead as planned.

Our local partners INAMA remain extremely concerned that the violence witnessed in the capital will spread to rural areas in the run-up to the elections due to take place this summer. Their reporting of outbreaks of conflict to their network of peacebuilders throughout the country is even more vital amid a nationwide media blackout caused by the fighting in Bujumbura. INAMA are able to warn remote communities about outbreaks of violence in their region, enabling local peacebuilders to defuse the situation and safeguard the local population.

Click here to find out more about INAMA’s work, and how you can support them.

 

Related content

Sewing the fabric of peace in Nigeria: Deborah’s story

In the city of Kano in northern Nigeria, an area regularly affected by violent conflict, skills training workshops offer young people a better future. We support our local partner, Peace Initiative Network (PIN), to give young people a pathway to peace. Read more »

Somali Peacebuilders Create Connections in the U.S.

Peace Direct's Somali partners visit the U.S. in May to share their innovative peacebuilding work. Isse Abdullahi directs the Social Life and Agricultural Development Organization (SADO), which provides young people with job training and conflict resolution skills. Halima Farah Godane. Read more »

Perspectives on Aid from the Philippines

At the heart of all of Peace Direct’s work lies the belief that local people should play a leading role in development and peacebuilding programmes. Peace Direct is currently leading on the Stopping As Success collaborative learning project which is looking at aid exits and transitions in support of locally-led development. Farzana Ahmed, Peace Direct’s Senior Researcher who is managing the project, reports on conversations she had with aid actors in the Philippines last month. Read more »

Comments

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *