France hails the consultations held on May 21-24 by the regional mediation body in Arusha, Tanzania. They represent a first step in support of the inter-Burundi dialogue, the only possible response to the crisis.
We reiterate our support for the facilitator, former President Benjamin Mkapa, and applaud his determination to see the inter-Burundi dialogue succeed, under the terms of the Arusha agreement. We call on all Burundian stakeholders, particularly those who were not present at this first session, to commit themselves constructively and without reservations to this end. We renew our call to all the Burundian parties to eschew violence.
France is committed – particularly within the UN Security Council – to a political solution and a strengthened UN presence on the ground, in line with the secretary-general’s proposals for the deployment of a police force.