African Union hopeful of Burundi force approval

2016-01-28 19:41
A man holds a placard reading "Maprobu not needed in our country Burundi" during a demonstration against the Republican Forces of Burundi (Forebu) on the beach of the lake Tanganyika near the port of Bujumbura.

A man holds a placard reading "Maprobu not needed in our country Burundi" during a demonstration against the Republican Forces of Burundi (Forebu) on the beach of the lake Tanganyika near the port of Bujumbura.

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

Addis Ababa - The African Union said on Thursday it was determined to end the crisis in Burundi as it readies for a key summit where leaders face an unprecedented vote on deploying a 5 000-strong peacekeeping force.

Burundi vehemently opposes any outside military force, but Aisha Abdullahi, AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, said she was "optimistic" it would be pushed through.

"The peacekeeping mission that we intend to deploy to Burundi is a protection force, it is there to insure that violations are not committed - by anybody," Aisha Abdullahi, AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, told AFP.

"When I say anybody I don't just mean the authorities - but also it could be the opposition, the rebels, whoever. And we hope, and we are optimistic, that Burundi will listen to us."

A two-thirds majority will be required to send the force, the African Prevention and Protection Mission in Burundi (MAPROBU) although it remains unclear who would be willing to contribute troops to a mission Burundi has branded an "invasion force".

President Pierre Nkurunziza, who has not said if he will attend the summit, called last month on Burundians to "stand up to fight" if AU troops set foot in the country without permission.

Human rights observers

The AU charter's Article 4h gives the pan-African bloc the right to intervene in a fellow nation state in "grave circumstances" it lists as war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity.

"It's very clear there's human rights violations. People are dying, people are getting arrested, there are also allegations of women being raped. We know those atrocities have been committed on both sides," Abdullahi added.

Leaders at the summit, which opens on Saturday, will do all they can "to insure that these violations are brought to an end," she said.

A handful of AU observers are already in Burundi, with proposals to increase the number.

"We have human rights observers on the ground. Even though their work is silent, it's very discreet work - but it is very far reaching," Abdullahi said.

"We're trying to increase the number of human rights observers to prevent further violations of human rights."

Read more on:    au  |  maprobu  |  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.