Burundi

EU envoy warns against coups d'état in Burundi

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Bujumbura, Burundi (PANA) - The European Union envoy in the African Great Lakes region, Aldo Ajello, has warned here that the international community would not tolerate another coup d'etat in Burundi.
Addressing a news conference to conclude his four-day visit to Bujumbura Sunday, Ajello conceded that the Burundi peace process had reached a delicate phase with the impending army reforms.

These reforms could trigger some resistance from within the armed forces, including a coup d'etat, Ajello said.

"Such adventure is out of date," he warned, noting that the international community was fed up with coups d'etat in Burundi.

"All the presidents of Burundi have in recent years been changed by means of coups d'état," the EU envoy remarked.

"The international community is increasingly aware of the need to help Burundians adopt normal democracy through a peaceful change of power," the European diplomat said.

Hard-liners within the Burundi army have made two abortive coups attempts against the incumbent President Major Pierre Buyoya in a bid to stop the ongoing peace negotiations with various Hutu rebel groups.

Buyoya's government has signed a series of cease-fire agreements with some of these groups, who resorted to arms after the assassination of the country's democratically elected president Melchior Ndadaye, a Hutu, in October 1993.

The creation of an ethnically balanced army is among the clauses of these accords. This would entail the demobilisation of a large number of soldiers from all ranks in the Tutsi-dominated army to pave the way for Hutu rebels.

Pan African News Agency
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