Visit of U.S. Special Envoy for the Great Lakes of Africa Thomas Perriello to Bujumbura, Burundi

June 23, 2016

U.S. Special Envoy Thomas Perriello visited Bujumbura, Burundi from June 22-23, 2016 for discussions with the Burundian government, civil society organizations, and representatives from UN and diplomatic missions about the ongoing political and security crisis in the country. The United States continues to strongly support the EAC-sponsored regional dialogue between Burundians, facilitated by former Tanzanian President Mkapa. We believe this is the best and only path to a peaceful and lasting resolution to the crisis. Meeting with Minister of Public Security Bunyoni, Special Envoy Perriello emphasized the importance of dialogue, ending impunity and human rights abuses, as well as the significant negative impact of persistent instability on Burundi’s economy. Special Envoy Perriello noted particular concern over the arrest and continued detention of students for defacing textbooks and related demonstrations. The Special Envoy called on all parties to the current conflict to renounce violence, allow for safe political debate and participation and recommit to a peaceful, negotiated path forward through the regional dialogue.