Catholic Church calls for Burundi talks

2015-09-22 19:37
Pierre Nkurunziza. (File: AFP)

Pierre Nkurunziza. (File: AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Nairobi - Burundi's influential Catholic Church has called for "meaningful dialogue" between rival forces to ensure there is no return to civil war.

"It is necessary that the real actors in the conflict, fighting for power, sit together immediately," the statement said, read out on Catholic radio by Bishop Gervais Bashimiyubusa, as well as in churches across the country.

President Pierre Nkurunziza won a highly controversial third term in July in polls boycotted by the opposition and denounced by the United Nations as neither free nor fair.

His re-election bid sparked an attempted coup by rebel generals and months of civil unrest led by opposition groups, who condemned it as unconstitutional.

Bashimiyubusa warned against those who may be tempted to "take the path of war."

The Catholic Church, followed by some 60% of the country, has previously spoken out against the president, saying his third-term went against a peace deal that helped end the 1993-2006 civil war, when at least 300 000 people were killed.

The Church message said the situation in the capital Bujumbura was "very worrying", and warned people had been "brutally murdered", as well as others who had been kidnapped, tortured or imprisoned without trial.

Many have raised alarm bells at the risk of renewed conflict in Burundi, which lies in the heart of central Africa's troubled Great Lakes region.

Burundi's constitution only allows a president to be elected twice - for a total of 10 years in power.

But Nkurunziza argued ahead of the poll that he had only been directly elected by the people once. In power since 2005, when he was selected by parliament, he was first re-elected in 2010.

Read more on:    pierre nkurunziza  |  burundi  |  east africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.