Media Statement

18 December 2015

South Africa expresses concern over the situation in Burundi

The South African Government continues to be deeply concerned over reports of increasing acts of violence and human rights violations in the Republic of Burundi, and notes that the ongoing instability has the potential to impact on the stability and security of the neighbouring countries in the East Africa region.

The attacks by armed rebels on military bases in and around Bujumbura on 11 December 2015 and resultant deaths have further given rise to serious concern amongst the international community, which South Africa shares.

South Africa wishes to highlight the need for the violence and killings to stop, and urges parties to refrain from using inflammatory language that could incite further tensions.

South Africa calls for all the Burundian stakeholders to engage immediately in the all-inclusive dialogue, and for the urgent start of the mediation led by President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, who was appointed by the East African Community (EAC).

South Africa supports the urgent strengthening and increased deployment by the AU Peace and Security Council of military, human rights and police observers.

We furthermore urge donor partners to reconsider their decision to cut funding as it will have a negative impact on the socio-economic situation and worsen the already high poverty levels amongst ordinary Burundians.

South Africa as a former mediator in Burundi remains ready and will continue to support the people of Burundi to achieve stability and development.

Enquiries: Mr Clayson Monyela, Spokesperson for DIRCO, 082 884 5976

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

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