United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon arrived today in Bujumbura, capital of Burundi, for an official visit during which he is expected to meet President Pierre Nkurunziza and other actors in support of ongoing UN efforts at resolving Burundi’s political crisis.
After a stop in Nairobi, Kenya, Mr, Ban was greeted on arrival in Bujumbura by the First Vice-President, Gaston Sindimwo, the Foreign Minister, Alain Nyamitwe, and other Government officials, as well as his Special Envoy to Burundi, Jamal Benomar, and by the Coordinator UN resident Paolo Lembo, said the UN office in Bujumbura.
In Kenya, the Secretary-General was briefed by the Director-General of the UN Office in Nairobi (UNON), Sahle-Work Zewde, and Kenya’s Minister for Education, Fred Matiangi.
Burundi was thrown into crisis this past April when President Nkurunziza decided to run for a controversial third term that he went on to win in July. To date, it has been reported that more than 400 people have been killed, more than 240,000 have fled the nation, and thousands more have been arrested and possibly subjected to human rights violations.
The UN chief is then expected to leave Burundi on Tuesday for the Democratic Republic of Congo on the second leg of an Africa tour. He is expected to be in Goma to visit people impacted by the insecurity and humanitarian crisis in the region, including those living in camps for internally displaced people, according to a statement on his schedule.
The next day, the Secretary-General will be in Kinshasa, where he will preside at the opening session of the Great Lakes Private Sector Investment Conference. He is also expected to meet with the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Joseph Kabila, as well as several Government officials and political and civil society representatives.
On Thursday, 25 February, the Secretary-General will head to Juba, South Sudan, where he is expected to meet with President Salva Kiir as well as visit a protection of civilians’ site that is run by the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).