The United States has urged its citizens in Burundi to leave the troubled central African country.
The State Department advisory issued on Sunday follows the Saturdaymassacre of over eighty people, who security agents claimed were part of a group that attacked military installations in Bujumbura city and its surroundings.
‘The US Department of State warns US citizens against all travel to Burundi and recommends that US citizens currently in Burundi depart as soon as it is feasible to do so,’ reads part of the advisory.
In November Belgium, the former colonial master, advised its citizens to leave Burundi while the European Union scaled down on its staff in the troubled country.
The tiny central African country descended into a downward spiral following President Pierre Nkurunziza’s announcement in April that he would seek a third term in office. Since then the country has been engulfed in persistent chaos that has seen the assassination of prominent opposition politicians and intermittent street protests.
Recently, the US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs linda Thomas-Greenfield asked the East African Community appointed mediator, President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, to urgently initiate dialogue aimed at restoring sanity in Burundi.
According to Thomas Greenfield, Mr Museveni and the EAC would take partial blame if war broke out in Burundi.
However, responding to her concerns, Uganda Media Centre Deputy Director Colonel Shaban Bantariza said President Museveni had designated a seasoned peace negotiator, Crispus Kiyonga, to oversee the process on his behalf.
“The Burundi matters are delicate ones and therefore, need time to be solved. However, President Museveni appointed Dr Crispus Kiyonga, who is a senior at negotiations and the two warring parties have confidence in him,” Col Bantariza, the Deputy Government Spokesman told the EagleOnline on phone on Saturday.