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Resolution adopted without a vote by the IPU Council
at its 170th session (Marrakech, 23 March 2002)

The Council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,

Referring to the outline of the case of above-mentioned parliamentarians of Burundi, as contained in the report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians (CL/170/13.c(ii)-R.1), and to the relevant resolution adopted at its 169th session (September 2001),

Taking account of the information provided by the President of the Transitional National Assembly of Burundi at the hearing with the Committee held on the occasion of the 107th Conference (March 2002),

Recalling that failed attempts were made on the lives of Mr. Ndihokubwayo and Mr. Ntibayazi in 1994 and 1995, respectively, leading the former to go into exile shortly after; recalling also that while, failing a complaint, no investigation was launched to identify and bring to justice Mr. Ntibayazi's attackers, the investigation opened to identify those who attacked Mr. Ndihokubwayo in September 1994 has produced no result; one of the persons who fired at him reportedly obtained a passport issued by the immigration services of the Government under a false name and sought asylum in the Netherlands; with regard to the second attempt on Mr. Ndihokubwayo's life, in December 1995, no investigation seems to have been instituted,

Recalling that Mr. Ndikumana went into exile on 12 August 1996 following charges of incitement to ethnic hatred in relation to his denunciations of violent acts and massacres reportedly committed by the military forces; he was found guilty of those charges on 7 March 1997 and sentenced to three years' imprisonment,

Noting that following the Arusha Peace Accords, all MPs in exile were invited to return to the country to assume their duties in the newly functioning Transitional National Assembly; noting that as a result Mr. Ndihokubwayo returned to Burundi in late December 2001 and has resumed his parliamentary mandate, and that Mr. Ndikumana, having returned to Burundi in January 2002, has also resumed his seat in Parliament,

Considering that, according to the information provided by the President of the Transitional National Assembly at the hearing held in Marrakech, Mr. Ndikumana has been granted a provisional amnesty, in common with all former MPs who have returned to the country, pending the final report of the international judicial inquiry commission,

Considering that the new Transitional National Assembly, provided for under the Arusha Peace Accords, started its work in January 2002 and will establish in the 12 months ahead an international judicial inquiry commission and a "truth and national reconciliation commission" to shed light on the violence which has prevailed in Burundi since its independence,

  1. Thanks the Burundian delegation and in particular the President of the Transitional National Assembly for the information provided;

  2. Notes that Mr. Ndihokubwayo and Mr. Ndikumana have both availed themselves of the possibility provided for by the Arusha Peace Accords to resume their parliamentary seats;

  3. Notes further that Mr. Ndikumana has been granted a provisional amnesty and is exercising his parliamentary mandate; consequently decides to close his case;

  4. Notes that (a) Mr. Ntibayazi is likewise exercising his mandate; (b) according to the authorities, he has never denounced the attempt on his life; (c) he has not provided information requested by the Committee; infers from this that he no longer wishes the Committee to examine his case; decides consequently to close it;

  5. Is dismayed at the standstill and lack of investigation regarding the attempts on the life of Mr. Ndihokubwayo; urges the authorities to investigate the allegation that one of his attackers was given a false passport to go abroad;

  6. Is confident that the newly established Transitional National Assembly will do its utmost to ensure that the fight against impunity, which features prominently in the Arusha Accords as a priority and prerequisite for the full re-establishment of the rule of law and respect for human rights in Burundi, is effective and that investigations are carried out with renewed vigour;

  7. Appreciates in this respect the setting up in the near future of a national and an international commission to establish accountability of perpetrators of human rights violations;

  8. Requests the Secretary General to bring this resolution to the attention of the authorities and the source;

  9. Requests the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians to continue examining the case of Mr. Ndihokubwayo and report to it at its next session (September 2002).

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