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Burundi: Politics and Government

Volume 507: debated on Tuesday 16 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent reports he has received on the (a) treatment of opposition parties in Burundi and (b) activities of the youth wings affiliated to political parties in Burundi, with particular reference to the (i) National Council for the Defence of Democracy—Forces for the Defence of Democracy and (ii) Front for Democracy in Burundi. (321652)

Opposition parties in Burundi have been functioning as normal over the past three months in the run-up to the elections due to start in May, including free circulation of politicians in all areas, holding of party congresses, opening of new party offices and putting forward of election candidates. There have been minor scuffles between the “Inbonerakure”, youth wing of the ruling National Council for Defence of Democracy—Forces for the Defence of Democracy and the Young Defenders of Burundian Democracy, youth wing of the Front for Democracy in Burundi. The Minister of the Interior has banned all youth wing activity in the province of Kirundo, and has vowed to extend the ban to other provinces in case of further trouble.