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The Burundi Crisis-Which Way Forward?

The Burundi Crisis 


Peace talks between Burundi's government and opposition groups have been postponed, with no word on when they may resume. The talks, which opened in Uganda late last month, were set to continue Wednesday in Arusha, Tanzania. But a senior official in Burundi's foreign affairs ministry, Joseph Bangurambona, said Tuesday the government will not participate due to the inclusion of those who he said are "supporting violence." Also, a leading opposition coalition, CNARED, said they have not received an invitation to the talks. This is certainly a big set back to the talks. It leaves the actors pondering hard the next move. Perhaps, the AU is going back to its resolve to militarily intervene but is it worthy it? 

African Union Military Intervention


It is unlikely that the the said military intervention by the AU in Burundi may help the situation. After all the government of Burundi has never assented to such a move. AU forces have no business fighting the government of Burundi, unless of course we need to have a UN backed AU led coup to overthrow the government of Bujumbura. AU missed all the important chances to intervene in Burundi. The worst mistake was letting President Nkurunziza ascend into power for a then illegitimate third term, which was later under confused circumstances, legitimised by the court in Burundi. In as as far as Pierre Nkurunziza forced it, he is now legitimately elected President of the Republic of Burundi. This makes it technically problematic for the AU to militarily intervene without his consent, unless as I said the AU itself wishes to sponsor a coup which is not acceptable. Due to the complexities such and the potential crisis  that AU military intervention in Burundi portends, prudence dictates that the AU vacates that resolve. 

The Significant of the Talks 


The peace talks are, in my opinion, the only viable hope in the search for a a viable political solution to the Burundi crisis. But we are seeing the talks hitting one snag after another. Despite all the challenges along this path, it is unfortunately the only other feasible way forward for Burundi. Without any fear of contradiction and with the courage to take a bullet by the fingers, I therefore argue that the Burundi talks must work, they must be made to work. Dialogue, discussion, conversation, mediation, negotiations, whatever we want to refer them, yes the TALKING is the only other viable way to deal with the current crisis in Burundi. All other interventions have been so overtaken with time. The AU and the West should not waste more time looking elsewhere unless they want to intervene and kill Nkurunziza or exile him and make Burundi another Libya effectively adding it to the list of failed states in Africa. 







The Burundi Crisis-Which Way Forward? The Burundi Crisis-Which Way Forward? Reviewed by Ibrahim Magara on January 06, 2016 Rating: 5

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