Burundi. The financial sanctions introduced by the neighboring countries after the 1996 coup were lifted in January on the grounds that democratization work has made great progress. Since the summer of 1998, Burundi has been ruled by a unifying government, and Parliament has been expanded to give voice to smaller parties. Continued negotiations in Tanzania on Reforms of the judiciary and the armed forces, however, did not produce any great results. In the fall, the talks stopped, both because the mediator, Tanzania’s former president Julius Nyerere, fell ill and that hutumilis launched a series of attacks against the capital of Bujumbura’s suburbs. Hopes for new peace contacts rose again since South Africa’s former President Nelson Mandela was appointed new mediator.
Visit Countryaah official website to get information about the capital city of Burundi. The fighting around Bujumbura led to more than a quarter of a million civilians, most of them Hutu, being moved to guarded camps, mainly with the intention of isolating the militia. Earlier in the Civil War, which began after the assassination of the first elected president in the fall of 1993, 550,000 had been moved to camp and 300,000 had left the country. Militia’s assassination of two UN employees in October caused the World Organization to suspend its operations in Burundi. In a report, the UN criticized the brutality of both sides, but not least the arbitrary imprisonment of the authorities and the widespread torture.
The camps, where people live in difficult conditions, were sharply criticized by the United States. Criticism also came from the African collaboration organization OAU, which in December urged the Burundi government to close camps as soon as possible.
Four journalists are pardoned
Four journalists imprisoned for a year are pardoned by President Ndayishimiye. Journalists work for Iwacu, which is described as Burundi’s only remaining independent news magazine. The four were arrested in October 2019 when they watched how rebels crossed the border from neighboring Congo-Kinshasa. The journalists were sentenced in January 2020 to 2.5 years in prison for threatening the country’s security. Human rights groups have protested against the verdicts, calling the allegations against journalists “baseless”.
Former President Boyoya is dead
Former Burundi president Pierre Buyoya has died in Paris at the age of 71. He falls ill in Mali’s capital Bamako a few days earlier and is then taken to the French capital for treatment but dies in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. The Tutsi Buyoya was the African Union (AU) envoy to Mali and the Sahel region from 2012 to the autumn of 2020, when in Burundi he was sentenced in his absence to life imprisonment for the murder of his successor Hutu Melchior Ndadaye in 1993 (see October 2020). Boyoya was president from 1987 to 1993 and from 1996 to 2003. Both times he seized power through military coups.