Panafrican News Agency

Burundi government set to receive ‘’warmly and with dignity’’ all refugees at home

Bujumbura, Burundi (PANA) - The Burundi government said here Monday it was “naturally set to receive warmly and with dignity its sons and daughters who want to return home”, an official statement issued here said.

This, it said, was in response to the urgent demand of Burundian refugees established in neighbouring Rwanda following the deadly electoral violence in 2015 in that country.

This desire to receive the refugees has many a time been  reaffirmed by the new Burundi president-elect, Evariste Ndayishimiye, without however resulting in a massive return home so far.

In the sub-region, Rwanda still hosts 72.007 Burundian refugees, Tanzania 164,873, Uganda 48,275, DR Congo  48,482, Kenya 13,800, Malawi 8,300, Zambia 6,000, Mozambique 7,800, and South Africa 9,200, according to data updated to 30 July by the UN High Commission for Refugees (HCR).

The Burundi government thanked the HCR and host countries who have already facilitated the voluntary return of some refugees and reaffirmed its encouragement to those who are still in exile to return home to contribute to the socioeconomic development of their country.

The HCR and its partners began organising the voluntary repatriation of Burundian refugees in September 2017.

The majority of the repatriated come from Tanzania, Kenya and, to some extent, the Democratic Republic of Congo.

On the other hand, a few Burundi refugees returned from Rwanda and Uganda.

The country has since 2017 repatriated 85,209 Burundians from Tanzania with the help of HCR, as against 184 from Kenya and 184 from DR Congo.

On the other hand, no refugee returned from Rwanda and Uganda, two countries regarded as being the most integrating of asylum seekers in the sub-region.


-0-     PANA     FB/JSG/SOC/MSA/RA   10Aug2020