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On Burundi, ICP Gets Its Non Replacement Scoop Confirmed, AFP Lifts

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive follow up on May 31 exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, June 3 -- On May 31 Inner City Press was informed by sources that Burundi's forces deployed to Central African Republic are slated this summer to be returned to Burundi, and there are no plan to replace them.

Inner City Press was exclusively told by UN sources, and exclusively reported, that Burundi is NOT invited to this week's UN Police event at UN headquarters, despite a protest by the Nkurunziza government. (Then there were Nkurunziza's threat in Mugamba, which Reuters said were against "criminal gangs.")

After Inner City Press exclusively reported and asked about both of these (May 31 video here), the UN confirmed both. On June 2 Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: Did you get an answer on whether… two things that I'd asked, one, whether, when the Burundians leave the mission in the Central African Republic, there will be any more Burundians to return.  And also if Burundi sought to attend this… UN COPS event.

Spokesman:  They are not attending.  Whether or not they sought to attend, I think, is a question for them.

And on the… their presence in Central African Republic, I should have something later for you.

On June 3, Duajrric's deputy Farhan Haq said: "On Burundi, we have been asked about the 15-day ultimatum given by the President to armed groups to surrender. We stress once again that the crisis in Burundi is a political crisis, which will be resolved only through a political solution.

The Secretary-General urges all stakeholders to commit to a genuine, inclusive dialogue, in order to move forward with resolving this crisis.

And in response to other questions regarding the Burundian police units currently serving in the Central African Republic, we have the following to say:  In light of the current situation in Burundi, a decision has been taken at UN Headquarters not to replace the units serving in the country when their tour of duty ends.

This decision has been communicated to the Burundian Permanent Mission to the UN in New York." Inner City Press asked Haq, UN transcript here:

Inner City Press: Thanks for the answer on the Burundian police decision.  I just wanted, in order to understand it, when you say in light of the situation, is this because the police would be needed back in Burundi given unrest, or is it because of the alleged human rights violations of the Burundian police in Burundi?

Deputy Spokesman:  It's the latter.  This was done after a study of the issue, including by our own Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

  After this and the response Inner City Press got from UN Police, video here and see below, Agence France Presse wrote up a story - with no credit whatsoever.


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