In the midst of a political crisis, Burundi celebrates the 25th anniversary of National Unity

This festival is the symbol of the Unity between the Hutus, the Tutsi and the Twa, three ethnic groups that make up the Burundian population.

AWhile the country is still plunged into a violent political crisis since last April, the feast of National Unity has been celebrated in all the provinces of the country. In various speeches made this Friday, the authorities of Bujumbura accuses the former settlers of having "destabilized" the unity of the Burundian people.

For the Catholic Church, the power in place should dare to face reality and tell Burundians that there is no unity within the population. For Monsignor Gervais Banshimiyubusa, president of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of Burundi (CECAB) and bishop of NGOZI (the native province of the Burundian President), we cannot speak of national unity while some Burundians continue to be killed and that others are hunted down to be killed because of their opinions or their political or social affiliation.

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"I feel sorry when I hear national unity sing on the radio when in reality there is none" he declared in a mass celebrated last Friday in honor of this party and attended by various personalities including the first vice-president Gaston Sindimwo.

In red [First Vice President Gaston SINDIMWO, during a demonstration march in Bujumbura in honor of the Burundian army on the eve of the massacres December 12th
In red, the First Vice President Gaston SINDIMWO
“Some people are celebrating the death of their Burundian compatriots in Bujumbura, that we no longer speak of national unity… If God showed you what you are doing now, would you really see that you are united as one people? He added, addressing the Christians seated in the front chairs, including the first vice-president.

The climate remains tense in Burundi after the refusal of the African Union to deploy an intervention force to protect the populations without the agreement of President Pierre Nkurunziza.

In a statement dated last Friday, the African Union announces that it will dispatch a delegation made up of the 4 presidents to try to convince the Burundian president to accept an inclusive dialogue as well as the deployment of a peace force in Burundi.

In an interview with France 24 last Wednesday, the Belgian Minister of External Relations, Didier Reynders, announced that Belgium would be ready to participate in an intervention force in Burundi, in case the African Union fails to convince President Nkurunziza to accept inclusive negotiations and the deployment of an intervention force on Burundian soil.

Quentin Ihiro, matches for Info Chrétienne in Burundi

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