Impunity Watch: “by failing to prosecute those responsible for abuses… successive Burundian regimes… have paved the way for cyclic violence”

From “Crisis in Burundi: How to address impunity and prevent future violations?”, by Impunity Watch, September 2015

It is a fallacy to think that redressing past massive violations of human rights and protecting rights in the present are mutually exclusive. Burundi’s ongoing political crisis is a grave demonstration of this fact. By neglecting to uncover the truth about the past, by failing to prosecute those responsible for abuses, by instituting flawed reparations procedures, and by forsaking the key measures needed for guaranteeing non-recurrence, successive Burundian regimes have failed to address the culture of impunity and have paved the way for cyclic violence. Peace, stability and democracy cannot be built on the foundations of impunity. Criminal justice procedures in particular would have a normaffirming effect in Burundi and would demonstrate that no-one is above the law.

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