Addis Ababa, 21 January 2016: The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, continues to follow with particular attention the evolution of the situation in Burundi, as well as the initiatives taken by the international community to find a lasting solution to the crisis facing this country. In this regard, she is encouraged by the decision of the United Nations Security Council to travel to Burundi, on 21 and 22 January 2016. This visit will be followed by consultations with the AU in Addis Ababa, on 23 January 2016.

The Chairperson of the Commission points that this visit is a follow-up to Resolution 2248 (2015) and the press statement, adopted by the United Nations Security Council, on 12 November and 19 December 2015, respectively. She notes, in particular, that in their press statement, the members of the Security Council expressed deep concern about the continuing escalation of violence, stressed the urgent need to resume the Inter-Burundian Dialogue and took note, with interest, of the decision by the AU Peace and Security Council, on 17 December 2015, to authorize the deployment of the African Prevention and Protection Mission in Burundi (MAPROBU), urging all Burundian parties to cooperate fully with the MAPROBU to help it effectively fulfill its mandate. She expresses the fervent hope that the visit of the Security Council will contribute towards achieving the two fundamental and complementary objectives of the rapid deployment of MAPROBU and the immediate resumption of the Inter-Burundian Dialogue, under the auspices of President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, on behalf of the East African Community.

The Chairperson of the Commission underscores, once more, the seriousness of the situation in Burundi and the risks it poses to the significant gains made since the signing of the Arusha Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in Burundi and the regional peace and stability. This situation highlights the urgent and imperative need for a strong unity of purpose and action between all the members concerned of the international community. Within this framework and in conformity with Chapter VIII of the Charter of the United Nations on the role of Regional Arrangements in promoting collective security, she urges the Security Council and all its members to give their full support to the decisions adopted by the PSC, which, in discharging its mandate, acts on behalf of the entire continent. She appeals to all AU Member States to strive to promote and defend African positions as articulated by the PSC, in accordance with their obligations under the Protocol Relating to the Establishment of the AU Peace and Security Council.

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