Canada Condemns Use of Violence for Political Goals in Burundi Ahead of Election
OTTAWA, Canada, July 21, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Niagara Falls, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today issued the following statement in advance of Burundi's presidential election, scheduled for July 21:
“President Nkurunziza's manoeuvre to obtain by force what he could not get through parliament earlier this year—a third term as president of Burundi—shows his complete disregard for the most basic principles of democracy.
“His bid has unleashed instability and violence characterized by the unrestrained use of force by militias acting with total impunity, exacerbating an already dire humanitarian crisis. Close to 170,000 Burundians—including prominent members of government and key democratic institutions as well as journalists—have fled to neighbouring countries fearing for their lives. Dozens of people have already died in violence related to the political unrest.
“Canada calls on President Nkurunziza and his government to protect the rights and interests of all Burundians and work with the East African Community and the African Union in accordance with the Arusha Peace Accords.
“Canada will continue to support the Burundian people as they seek a future that embraces peace, freedom and democracy.”