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On Burundi, IMF Tells ICP $6.9 M Program Discussion in June No Longer

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, May 14, with video -- Amid the protests and crackdown after Pierre Nkurunziza was nominated to run for a third term as President in seeming violation of the Arusha Peace Accord, on May 13 General Godefroid Niyombare announced the ouster of Nkurunziza while the latter was in Tanzania for the East African Community meeting.

  On May 14, Inner City Press has asked the International Monetary Fund's spokesperson Gerry Rice at the IMF biweekly embargoed briefing:

"On Burundi, after the IMF's announcement of $6.9 million in the run up to elections, now with General Godefroid Niyombare saying Pierre Nkurunziza is no longer in power, what is the status of the IMF's funds and program, when will it be reviewed?"

  Rice took this question and replied that the "IMF is following the current developments in Burundi very closely.  The Fund-supported program that was recently approved, it's fair to say that given the current security situation, the timing of our next discussions with the authorities has yet to be determined."

 Tw weeks ago on April 30, the IMF told Inner City Press on Burundi

"Many thanks for your question. Please see our line  below:

'We are continuing to monitor developments in Burundi. Regarding the ECF-supported program that was recently approved, our next meeting with the authorities is tentatively scheduled to take place in June, at which time we will assess progress toward the completion of the 7th review.'"

 So, no more June?

  (On May 14 Rice also answered Inner City Press on Nepal, saying an IMF team is "on the ground" and considering all feasible options. Debt relief? Questions remain outstanding on Tunisia, Ghana and Jamaica.)

 Watch this site. With the UN Security Council set to hear from Said Djinnit around noon in New York, at 9:30 am in front of the Security Council UK deputy ambassador Peter Wilson said he wouldn't speak on Burundi until after Djinnit's briefing.

 Throughout May 13 Inner City Press asked the Presidency of the UN Security Council for May, Lithuania, when Burundi might be addressed. At the luncheon with the Secretary General was the first response.

 Then after five p.m. Inner City Press asked Lithuania's Permanent Representative to the UN, who replied there will be an emergency meeting on Burundi on May 14 after the Council's previously scheduled meeting on Iraq; Said Djinnit will brief.

 But what will he say?

 On May 15, the UN Peacebuilding Configuration on Burundi is set to hear from UN DPA chief Jeff Feltman. On Monday they heard from Minister Nduwimana - where is he now?.


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