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Burundi bars United Nations

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President of Burundi, Pierre Nkurunziza.
President of Burundi, Pierre Nkurunziza.

The Government of Burundi on Saturday said it would not cooperate with a UN commission of inquiry formed to investigate human rights abuses in the East African country.

A UN report earlier this week found that government and allied groups had been responsible for the unlawful killings of over 560 people since April 2015 and warned of an impending genocide.

In response, the UN Human Rights Council on Friday approved the formation of a commission that would investigate the reported abuses, including torture and arbitrary arrests.

However, presidential adviser Willy Nyamitwe said that members of the commission would not be allowed into the country because it would go against Burundi’s “national sovereignty.”

Burundi has been in turmoil since President Pierre Nkurunziza announced in 2015 that he would seek a third term in office in spite of a constitutional two-term limit.

His election victory in July 2015 unleashed a wave of political violence in which hundreds have been killed.

Human rights activists say the Hutu-dominated government is increasingly targeting Tutsis in an attempt to foment ethnic hatred and divert attention from the political conflict.

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