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Charlotte Wilson

Volume 403: debated on Monday 10 March 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to the Government of Burundi since the killing of British aid worker Charlotte Wilson in December 2000. [98985]

Since the tragic death of Charlotte Wilson we have made numerous representations to the Burundi authorities. As soon as our Embassy in Kigali was made aware of her killing, we made contact with the Burundi authorities, urging them to bring the perpetrators to justice. They assured us that they would do all they could to apprehend Charlotte's killers. The Burundi Foreign Ministry has confirmed this in writing.Since that time, our Ambassador in Kigali and other Embassy staff have frequently raised Charlotte Wilson's case with the Burundi authorities and will continue to do so. My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary discussed Charlotte Wilson with Burundi President Pierre Buyoya and Minister of Justice, Fulgence Bakana, during his visit to Burundi in January 2002. More recently, on 10 February 2003, my noble Friend Baroness Amos raised Charlotte's case with the Burundi Foreign Minister, Therence Sinunguruza, during his visit to London. We also arranged for Charlotte's mother to meet the Foreign Minister on the same day.We have offered assistance to the Burundi authorities from the Metropolitan police, should they require it. We continue to press for a full investigation and for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.