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Procedure : 2017/2508(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B8-0084/2017

Texts tabled :


Debates :

PV 19/01/2017 - 4.3
CRE 19/01/2017 - 4.3

Votes :

Texts adopted :


PDF 194kWORD 52k
See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-0075/2017

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law

pursuant to Rule 135 of the Rules of Procedure

on the situation in Burundi (2017/2508(RSP))

Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Ignazio Corrao, Laura Agea, Isabella Adinolfi, Laura Ferrara, Piernicola Pedicini, Rolandas Paksas on behalf of the EFDD Group
NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.

European Parliament resolution on the situation in Burundi (2017/2508(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

-Having regard to the final report of the United Nations Independent Investigation in Burundi (UNIIB)


-Having regard to UNSC Resolution 2303(2016) and to other relevant UNSC resolutions


-Having regard to UN Human Rights Council Resolution on Burundi of 30 September


-Having regard to EU Council Conclusions on Burundi


-Having regard to the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide of 9 December 1948;

-Having regard to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court;

-Having regard to the Constitution of Burundi

-Having regard to the 26th African Union Summit conclusions

-Having regard to the Arusha Agreements

-Having regard to the Cotonou Agreement

-Having regard to its previous resolutions on Burundi,




A. Whereas Burundi is going through a dramatic political, social and economic crisis since it's president Pierre Nkurunziza, in violation of Arusha Agreements and of the country's constitution, decided to run for a third presidential term in April 2015;


B. Whereas since then more than 2500 people have been killed in the country, more than 300000 fled, around 6000 detainees are subject to inhuman conditions in jail and between 300 and 800 people disappeared;


C. Whereas serious violation of human rights and crimes against humanity are being committed in Burundi, particularly targeting opposition members or people criticizing the President; whereas such violation includes but are not limited to torture, extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances, violence against civil society and ethnic minorities and violence against women; whereas these violations are carried out by security and police forces and the Imbonerakure in a climate of total impunity for the perpetrators;


D. Whereas armed opposition groups have also increased their attacks, killing Imbonerakure and other ruling party members, as well as security forces;


E. Whereas there’s a worrying ethnic component to the crisis as a growing number of Tutsi have been excluded from key governments positions and have been targeted by extrajudicial killing (including a government minister, Emmanuel Niyonkuru), Tutsi women have been raped and the language used by authorities in public speeches has been reminiscent of the one used during the Rwanda genocide;


F. Whereas Civil society has less and less space to operate since freedom of association, assembly and expression has been heavily curtailed in the country, human rights defenders have been criminalised, NGO have been dissolved or their activity has been restricted; whereas from 21 December 2016 league ITEKA, the oldest human rights organization of Burundi, is no longer allowed to work in in the country;


G. Whereas on 14 March 2016 the Council concluded consultations with Burundi under article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement, considering them not satisfying and suspending any direct financial support to the Burundian administration, maintaining at the same time financial support to the population and humanitarian assistance;


H. Whereas on 25 April 2016 the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal court started a "preliminary examination" on alleged crimes under the International Criminal Court's jurisdiction committed in Burundi since April 2015; whereas, as a consequence, Burundi announced its decision to withdraw from the International Criminal Court on 6 October 2016;


I. Whereas in September 2016 the report of the United Nations Independent Investigation in Burundi described “abundant evidence of gross human rights violations,” possibly amounting to crimes against humanity, by the Government of Burundi and people associated with it;


J. Whereas with UNSC 2303(2016) of 29 July 2016, the Security council authorized a 228 units police officers mission to be deployed in Burundi; whereas the UN Human Rights Council with it resolution of 27 September on Human Rights situation in Burundi decided to create, for a period of one year, a commission of inquiry to conduct a thorough investigation into human rights violations and abuses in Burundi;


K. Whereas Burundi has so far refused to cooperate with the UN and other international actors, announcing its withdrawal from the ICC, not cooperating with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and refusing to comply to UN resolutions;



1. Is extremely worried by the ongoing crisis and by the escalating violence in Burundi; believes it is of the greatest importance to keep the situation in the country at the top of the international agenda to avoid a further deterioration of the situation;


2. Is horrified by the on-going gross violations of human rights and crimes against humanity in the country and it’s extremely concerned by alarming signals of an increasing ethnic dimension of the crisis, including the deliberate targeting of Tutsi officials, that may lead to genocidal dynamics; reiterates that the present crisis is primarily political and that semantics pinpointing to specific ethnic groups should be absolutely avoided by all parties; calls on the international community to nevertheless stand ready to recognize crimes committed in Burundi may amount to genocide if the actual trend continues;



3. Calls on Burundian authorities to ensure security forces put an immediate end to all human rights violations and to launch an independent, impartial and effective investigations into the alleged violations perpetrated by them with the aim to hold them accountable for their actions; calls Burundi’s government to engage in an unconditional dialogue with all the opponents and civil society actors in Burundi under the auspices of the East African Community or other willing international or regional organizations;


4. Calls on the authorities to disarm rebel and armed militias operating in Burundi, including the Imbonerakure, to hold them accountable and to prosecute and try them before courts for their crimes and to ensure that no Imbonerakure or member of other militia takes part in peace making or security mission;


5. Calls for the Burundi authorities to immediately release all persons arbitrarily detained and ensure their physical integrity out of prison;


6. Calls on Burundi authorities to put an end to all threats, intimidations and harassment against members of the opposition, civil society, human right defenders and journalists; urges the government to fully restore the rights to peaceful demonstration, freedom of expression and peaceful assembly;


7. Calls on opposition parties to refrain from any action or declaration that could lead to an escalation of violence and to fully engage in the inter-Burundian dialogue;



8. Condemns the crackdown on civil society and the legal and operative burdens put on NGOs; condemn the decision to ban ITEKA and urges the Burundian authorities to reconsider this decision and ensure that civil society players and human rights activists are able to operate freely and safely by, inter alia, revoking the suspension of NGOs and unfreezing their bank accounts;


9. Calls on Burundian authorities to refrain from inflammatory statements and in particular from using semantics pinpointing an ethnic group or minority and, on the contrary, to use public declarations to condemn all serious human rights violations;


10. Urges Burundi to cooperate fully with the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Burundi, to comply with relevant UN resolutions and implement their recommendations, to allow the UN sanctioned inquiry to take place without restrictions and to reconsider the decision to withdraw from the Rome statute


11. Urges the International Criminal Court to quickly determine whether they will open a full investigation into Burundi before the country’s withdrawal from the court; believes it’s of the utmost importance to fight against impunity and to held the perpetrators of crimes accountable;


12. Urges the international donors to set clear conditions for the resumption of aid, including the cessation of human rights violations; welcomes the European Union decision to suspend direct financial support to Burundi until conditions improve while at the same time maintaining humanitarian aid; supports EU decision to directly pay Burundian Soldier participating to Amisom in order to prevent the money being diverted by Burundi government;



13. Calls on the Commission and the EEAS to coordinate with other international actors to mediate with parties for an immediate stop to violence in the country and to facilitate an effective and inclusive dialogue between the relevant stakeholders; calls on the EU to support the UN in the deployment of an international force to ensure the protection of civilian populations;


14. Welcomes 29 September 2016 Council Decision to renew EU restrictive measures against 4 Burundians; calls on the European Council to extend such targeted restrictive measures against those whose actions have led or lead to violence and repression in serious human rights violations, and/or hinder the search for a political solution within the framework proposed by the AU and the EAC;


15. Calls on United Nations to stand ready to adopt additional measures depending on the developments in Burundi, including the suspension of Burundi’s right to sit in the Human Right Council; calls on the African Union likewise to stand ready to suspend Burundi participation to its bodies;



16. Calls on African Union to support an inclusive dialogue between Burundian Stakeholders and to act in a more resolute way, should the situation not improve, by strengthening and coordinating its actions with the United Nations and by supporting the deployment of an UN-AU international force under chapter VII of the United Nations charter, tasked with overseeing the Burundian security force exercising the use of force; urges African leaders to define a common position and to support and endorse African Union proposal in this regards;


17. Calls on the African Union to implement the decision, in coordination with Burundian authorities, to deploy human rights observers in the country, as decided at the 26th African Union Summit of January 2016;


18. Instructs the President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Vice President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security P0olicy, the EU Special Representative for Human Rights, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the Government and Parliament of Burundi, the institutions of the African Union, the United Nations Secretary-General of the United Nations and the East African Community and the governments of its Member States.






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