Burundi peace agreement talks set for Pretoria

Bujumbura- Burundi (PANA) -- The 19 Burundi peace agreement signatories are to hold a plenary session in Pretoria next Tuesday, the country's information minister Luc Rukingama announced in Bujumbura Friday.
Rukingama said the mediator in the Burundian conflict, former South African President Nelson Mandela, has called the meeting so as to iron-out hitches in choosing transition leaders.
Pierre Buyoya's government has stated that it was not prepared to leave power in a hurry before a cease-fire is concluded with Hutu rebels, who have been fighting government troops for nearly eight years.
But opposition parties who are eager to play a role in the new state institutions envisaged under the inter-Burundian peace agreement do not share this view.
Meanwhile, another meeting on the envisaged cease-fire opened in Pretoria Thursday, involving defence ministers from Burundi, South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal and observers from Belgium, the former colonial power.
These countries have agreed in principle to provide military assistance to Burundi during the creation of new institutions.
Burundi's defence minister Maj.
Cyrille Ndayirukiye recently said that more discussions were required to set the practical modalities for deploying foreign military contingents in the country.

06 july 2001 21:56:00

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