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Burundi govt says no to peace talks

Africa

Nairobi - Burundi's government will not take part in peace talks with the opposition scheduled for Wednesday, a senior official said, casting fresh doubt on efforts to end months of violence.

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An activist wearing a headband reading "Nkurunziza must fall" protests in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi on December 18, 2015, against recent killings in neighbouring Burundi by government forces in a crackdown against public dissent to a controversial third-presidential term by currently president. The African Union said on December 17, 2015 it would not allow genocide to take place in Burundi as the United Nations ordered a probe into widespread abuses and warned of looming civil war. Burundi descended into bloodshed in April when President Pierre Nkurunziza announced his intention to run for a controversial third term, which he went on to win in July, violence in Burundi that has left more than 400 people dead since April. / AFP / TONY KARUMBA

The talks in neighbouring Tanzania were announced last month as part of regional efforts to resolve a crisis triggered by President Pierre Nkurunziza's decision to run for a third term in office - a move opponents said broke the constitution.

“No dialogue on Wednesday neither on January 16 as many may think, because there has been no consensus on that date,” Joseph Bangurambona, the permanent secretary in Burundi's foreign affairs ministry, told Reuters on Tuesday.

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