Burundi’s government said it needs only 20 United Nations police officers to boost security in the East African country, about two days before UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is due to present options for deploying a force.
Government spokesman Philippe Nzobonariba told national television that the unarmed officers they are proposing would help train Burundi’s police and work alongside African Union observers. He said that security had returned to much of the country, making a larger deployment unnecessary.
Landlocked Burundi has been rocked by unrest that’s killed more than 470 people since April 2015, when President Pierre Nkurunziza announced plans to stand for a third term, a move criticized by his opponents as unconstitutional.
The UN Security Council on April 1 adopted a resolution asking Ban to present options in 15 days for positioning UN police personnel to help monitor security in Burundi.