September 12, 2020

Burundi Refuses to Participate in Goma Quadripartite Summit

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Burundi President Evariste Ndayishimiye

The Government of Burundi has declined to take part in the heads of state summit being organized by DR Congo due for September 13 in the border town of Goma.

DRC President Felix Tshisekedi had been scheduled to host Rwanda’s Paul Kagame, Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni, Burundi’s Evariste Ndayishimiye and Angola’s João Lourenço.

It had been arranged that the five countries send technical teams to be in Goma on September 9 to prepare the working documents. Delegations at ministerial level were scheduled to also arrive in Goma for their segment on Sept 12.

Now, it is emerging that Burundi foreign affairs ministry sent a diplomatic note (note verbal) to DRC saying it wouldn’t to take part in the summit.

In the letter, now leaked to media and dated September 8, Burundi says it has a “busy calendar” which doesn’t allow it to take part in the summit.

Instead, the government in Gitega, says it prefers that bilateral engagements are held first with Kinshasa in effort to work on a range of issues between DRC and Burundi.

It is unclear at this point if Rwanda’s President will be there, but already a high-level Rwandan delegation is reported to be at the summits venue, indicating the President’s possible attendance.

The diplomatic note sent by Burundi to DR Congo

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