Outcry at Burundi departure from ICC
From OMEGA SSUUNA in Bujumbura, Burundi
BUJUMBURA, (CAJ News) – THE Burundian parliamentary vote endorsing the withdrawal from the International Criminal Court (ICC) has been dismissed as part of government’s continued efforts to deny justice for victims of human rights violations during ongoing crises.
On Wednesday, parliamentarians in a national assembly dominated by Pierre Nkurunziza’s ruling party unanimously voted in favour of the withdrawal.
The vote was supported by 94 of 110 members.
It came at a time the ICC is examining allegations of crimes committed in Burundi, which is suffering crisis after Nkurunziza clung to power despite the lapse of his second term last year.
Hundreds of opposition members have been killed or abducted while more than 250 000 Burundians have fled to neighbouring countries.
“This vote highlights the government’s unwillingness to deliver justice for victims,” said Muthoni Wanyeki, Amnesty International’s regional director.
On Thursday (yesterday), Canada urged Burundi to resume cooperation with the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Bujumbura and to cooperate fully with the Commission of Inquiry into the human rights situation.
“Canada supports all independent judicial processes to ensure an end to impunity for serious human rights violations,” Stéphane Dion, Minister of Foreign Affairs, said.
– CAJ News
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