Burundi leaders encouraged to pursue dialogue

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People demonstrate in Bujumbura against a decision by Burundi's ruling party to nominate President Pierre Nkurunziza to run for a third term (April 2015). File Photo: IRIN/Desire Nimubona/

The human rights situation in Burundi continues to deteriorate, with nearly 100 people killed and 600 detained or tortured since the start of election-related turmoil in April.

That's according to the UN human rights office, OHCHR, which is urging the country's political leaders to renounce the use of violence and resolve their differences peacefully.

Dianne Penn reports.

The UN human rights office, OHCHR, reported that so far, there have been no trials in relation to the violence, killings and torture in Burundi. 

While the authorities have indicated that investigations are taking place, it understood that this applied to very few cases.

OHCHR called on all sides in the country to resume dialogue before the situation spirals completely out of control.

Ravina Shamdasani is a spokesperson for the UN human rights office.

"Burundi has been slipping closer to the edge with every high-profile attack and killing, and we call on leaders on all sides to take concrete steps to renounce the use of violence and to resolve differences peacefully. Where violations and abuses have occurred, there needs to be prompt investigations with a view to bringing the perpetrators to account and justice for victims."

The crisis in Burundi stems from President Pierre Nkurunziza's decision to pursue a third term.

More than 180,000 people have fled to neighbouring countries according to the UN refugee agency, UNHCR.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 1'04"

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