Representatives of the Burundian opposition Union for National Progress party attending the peace talks in Arusha, Tanzania have tabled a number of issues they want addressed.
SHINGIRO (@AShingiro) May 21, 2016
Key among them is the cessation of violence and the creation of transitional institutions that will lead to the holding of elections deemed credible by Burundians and the international community.
The opposition in Burundi as well as some army officers were against President Pierre Nkurunziza’s bid for a third term in office when he declared his intention in April last year.
Nkurunziza however went ahead to win the July poll and has since been duly sworn in but the opposition is still against his stay in office.
As a result, the opposition coalition based in the diaspora, CNARED, has boycotted the peace talks in Arusha.
In spite of a planned opposition boycott, the Union for National Progress is participating in the talks because they want their concerns addressed.
The Arusha meeting which started on Saturday is aimed at restoring peace to the troubled country.
Government representatives as well as civil society organisations are participating in the talks in spite of concerns raised by the opposition in the build up to the meeting.
Despite the differences of the Burundian actors, stakeholders believe the current negotiations will bear fruits.
Similar negotiations which led to the Arusha Accord of 2000, brought an end to the 12-year civil war which gripped Burundi between the early 1990s and 2000s.
Photo Credit: Amb. Albert Shingiro (Twitter)