Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders welcomes the announced liberation of prisoners in Burundi after a presidential pardon from President Nkurunziza. These prisoners are protesters against the third mandate of the president and militants of the MSD party who were arrested during a protest on 8 March 2014.
This presidential pardon is a step in the right direction and a sign of openness from the Burundian authorities. In the framework of the dialogue established in article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement, the European Union already demanded the liberation of all political prisoners in safe conditions. Minister Reynders hopes that in the same spirit of national reconciliation, other prisoners of conscience will benefit from a similar measure. Belgium continues to support a solution to the crisis through more democratic space and an inclusive dialogue between the Burundian parties.
Source: Kingdom of Belgium - Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation.