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Buyoya wants EA security body

By Vision Reporter

Added 11th April 2002 03:00 AM

BURUNDI President Pierre Buyoya has called for a permanent regional security body to address conflicts before they get out of hand.

BURUNDI President Pierre Buyoya has called for a permanent regional security body to address conflicts before they get out of hand.

By Anne Mugisa and Okello Jabweli BURUNDI President Pierre Buyoya has called for a permanent regional security body to address conflicts before they get out of hand. Buyoya, who was speaking at the Great Lakes Regional Symposium in Kampala yesterday, also called for expansion of the East African Community to include his country and Rwanda. Presidents Benjamin Mkapa of Tanzania, Daniel arap Moi of Kenya and Yoweri Museveni of Uganda attended the symposium. Buyoya said the region lacks the necessary structures of addressing and following problems of peace and stability. He said it was important that the war-torn region establishes structures to deal with conflicts, which have become a major concern. On regional integration, Buyoya said countries in the region have no choice but to be together in order to have meaningful development and stability. Burundi and Rwanda have applied to be admitted to the East African Community and are now waiting for a response. Several participants at the symposium have also called for the admission of the two countries, saying it would help them stabilise and allow them to participate in the regional development. The East African Community Secretary General, Maj. Amanya Mushega, said the Council of Ministers early this month considered the two countries’ applications. Mushega said he will report the Council of Ministers’ decision to the East African Community Heads of State on Friday and thereafter notify Rwanda and Burundi. Rwanda’s foreign minister said their admission to the community will benefit not only the two countries but also the old members. He said it was not a question of begging for acceptance as a member, but the whole region stood to reap dividends. He said Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo already belong to another economic body which is duly registered with the UN and the OAU and which could benefit the East African region. Buyoya, who left for home shortly after his speech, praised the late Tanzanian president Julius Nyerere, saying he was an African liberator who played an important role in the return of peace to Burundi.

Buyoya wants EA security body

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