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UN Security Council weighs Burundi crisis


United Nations- image source climateactionprogramme

United Nations- image source climateactionprogramme

The UN Security Council launched closed-door consultations Friday on violence shaking Burundi, where President Pierre Nkurunziza’s decision to run for a third term sparked deadly protests.

Diplomats do not expect the Security Council to publish a formal declaration or resolution after the talks.

Russia has blocked previous Security Council initiatives seeking to take a position on Nkurunziza, saying the body should not get involved in the constitutional affairs of a sovereign state.

During the meeting called by France, ambassadors from the council’s 15 member countries were to be briefed by UN special envoy Said Djinnit.

“It is very important to illustrate the fact that the Security Council is fully mobilized to support the efforts of Said Djinnit and to stop the violence that we see and to create the conditions for a fair, transparent and inclusive election process,” said French envoy Francois Delattre.

At least 18 people have been killed, including protesters and police, and scores have been wounded since late April, when the ruling CNDD-FDD nominated Nkurunziza to stand for re-election, triggering daily protests.

Over 50,000 Burundians have fled their country since the start of political violence in April, according to the UN refugee agency UNHCR, which said that many more were trying to leave but faced hurdles.

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