By Jan Oberg
Virtually everyone with an expertise in humanitarian crisis has warned about the unfolding catastrophe these very days in Burundi – the head of UNHCR, former UN Humanitarian chief Jan Egeland, the UN Secretary-General and his envoy, the International Crisis Group, specialists on Burundi, human rights organisations such as Human Rights Watch, civil society organisations inside Burundi, etc. TFF did it in PressInfo 319 of April 29, 2015.
Everyone who cares will see all the red lamps and hear the alarm bells. We have a history of genocide in this country and neighbouring Rwanda just a few years ago. There is something to build our early warnings on. But who is listening? Who is taking action, serious political action?
There have been meetings in the capital Bujumbura, regional leaders, the UN Envoy and a US Ambassador have met with the president and put pressure, urged, expressed concern or appealed. Unfortunately, it seems to be a display of powerlessness and lack of real political will.
This tired diplomacy might even convince the Burundian president that he can safey continue his stubborn policies because – and that’s his advantage – the country called Burundi is of so little real interest to anyone that those who could do something turn their heads and pretend they just don’t see.
We may of course sit and wait. Hoping it will all miraculously be good again tomorrow. Here are some more or less realistic hopes: Read More »