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Burundi's government to boycott forthcoming peace talks in Tanzania

Burundi's government to boycott forthcoming peace talks in Tanzania


The government of Burundi has said it will boycott the peace talks that are scheduled to resume on Thursday in Tanzania, although the main opposition alliance has confirmed its participation.

In a statement released on Wednesday, the government said it finds some irregularities in the organisation of this present session.

Spokesman Phillipe Nzobonariba said the government objected to the presence of senior U.N. adviser Benomar Jamal, but did not say why.

The government has repeatedly accused the U.N. of bias against it after several human rights groups have said the security forces and ruling party have committed abuses.

The main opposition grouping said it would attend the talks although it has previously accused mediator Benjamin William Mkapa, a former president of Tanzania, of bias.

The talks are meant to find an end to a violent political crisis that began in 2015 after President Pierre Nkurunziza said he would seek a third term – a move opponents said violated the constitution and a peace deal that ended an ethnically charged civil war.

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