BUJUMBURA May 12th (ABP) – The President of the Republic of Burundi Mr. Evariste Ndayishimiye, met journalists on Tuesday, May 10, at the Ntare Rushatsi House, during a press conference where he answered various questions concerning all areas of national life.
In the sector of cooperation, the journalists asked whether Burundi could have its relations with the European Union altered because it maintains good relations with Russia at a time when the European Union supports Ukraine in its conflict with Russia. In that regard, President Ndayishimiye affirmed that Burundi has taken the decision of neutrality in the face of the Russo-Ukrainian conflict.
For him, Burundi is open to partnership with countries that would like to establish good relations with it without any distinction, explaining that Burundi maintains partnerships with Russia and Ukraine, citing the case of Burundian students who study there. Regarding cooperation with the European Union, the Head of State said that funding project partnerships are underway.
Mr. Ndayishimiye also spoke about relations with Rwanda, answering the question of what is blocking the effective normalization of good relations between the two countries.
In that regard, he noted that the dialogue is evolving with Rwanda. Burundi has always demanded the repatriation of those who perpetrated the failed putsch in 2015. Raising that the two parties via judicial officials have already met with the aim of finding a solution to the question, he added.
For him, despite what happened, between the two brotherly countries, they are on the right track to reconnect again with good cohabitation.
In terms of territorial security, the journalists asked whether Burundi would be ready to dialogue with the armed groups in the DRC, if the latter agree to cease hostilities. Referring to the Red Tabara and the FNL who declared war on Burundi.
President Ndayishimiye replied that Burundi is open to dialogue with those belligerents if they agree to lay down their arms. He also said that for some of them who are guilty of abuses, they should answer to the law despite the dialogue being initiated.
He recalled that some have already returned home, after talks with the government of Burundi, including political opponents and those who had taken up arms. He informed that some 500 young people within the armed groups would have expressed their concern to return home.
For the President of the Republic, all Burundians in exile are welcome at home. He challenged all those who would like to, to follow in the footsteps of those who have returned in order to participate with others in the construction of the country.