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AU to deploy peacekeepers to Burundi despite the country's disapproval

AU to deploy peacekeepers to Burundi despite the country's disapproval

Burundi

The African Union is putting together the African Prevention and Protection Mission in Burundi (MAPROBU) which will have the initial strength of 5000 military and police personnel to protect civilians in Burundi.

The decision was taken after the 565th African Union Commission Peace and Security Council meeting in Addis Ababa on Thursday, December 17.

The mission will be deployed to Burundi “even without the government consent“after the AU gets a UN backing. The mission will serve for an initial six months renewable period.

Africa will not allow another genocide to take place on its soil.

Burundi is reported to have rejected the peacekeeping force calling it “an attack” on its government if the mission is sent without its consent.

Philippe Nzobonariba, a Burundian government official in an interview with the BBC called for a legal process to be followed suggesting that “a peacekeeping force would be better employed in Rwanda.”

On Thursday, members of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) led by the director of the Peace and Security Department, El-Ghassim Wane, raised the urgent need for action to stop the killings in Burundi.

The PSC jointly agreed that “Africa will not allow another genocide to take place on its soil.”

The African Union Commissioner for Peace and Security, Ambassador Smail Chergui, also said on his Twitter page that there was “a very clear message coming out of the ongoing PSC meeting: the killings in Burundi must stop immediately.”

Eighty seven people were killed in clashes in Burundi on Friday as part of a “sweep operation”, according to the Burundian army.

A trial has also began for 28 people made up of Generals and senior army officers implicated in the failed coup in May.

The mission to be drawn from the East African Standby Force includes personnel from Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda.

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