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Resolution adopted unanimously by the Governing Council
at its 177th session (Geneva, 19th October 2005)

The Governing Council of the Inter-Parliamentary Union,

Referring to the case of Mr. Norbert Ndihokubwayo of Burundi, as outlined in the report of the Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians (CL/177/11(a)-R.1), and to the resolution adopted at its 176th session (April 2005),

Recalling the following: The then Transitional National Assembly set up a parliamentary working group to examine, together with the competent authorities, how the investigation could be reactivated into the attempts on the life of Mr. Ndihokubwayo perpetrated in September 1994 and again in December 1995. One of the persons suspected of perpetrating the attempt on his life in September 1994, which left him severely injured, has since been apprehended, albeit in connection with another crime,

Recalling also that in August 2004 the Transitional National Assembly adopted the Law on the National Truth and Reconciliation Commission; but that its members have not as yet been appointed,

Noting that, on 20 June 2005 the United Nations Security Council adopted resolution 1606 (2005) requesting the United Nations Secretary-General to initiate negotiations with the Government and consultations with all the Burundian parties concerned on how to implement the mixed Truth Commission and establish a special chamber within the Burundian court system to investigate war crimes and human rights violations, as provided for in the Arusha Agreement,

Noting that elections for a permanent National Assembly and Senate took place in Burundi on 4 and 29 July 2005 respectively, and that on 19 August 2005 Mr. Nkurunziza was elected President of Burundi,

Noting that the IPU Secretary General will visit Burundi from 7 to 9 November 2005 in connection with a regional seminar on the role of parliament in national reconciliation processes in Africa, organized by the parliament of Burundi, the Inter-Parliamentary Union and the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA),

  1. Welcomes the express commitment from the newly elected authorities to pursue the road to peace and national reconciliation in Burundi;

  2. Is confident that the newly elected parliament will make every effort to ensure that the attempts on the life of Mr. Ndihokubwayo do not go unpunished, as impunity can be a major obstacle to effective reconciliation; is convinced that through a special parliamentary committee established for this purpose, due and continuous attention can be given to this question; and therefore sincerely hopes that the new parliament will seriously consider reconstituting the parliamentary working group or setting up a similar mechanism, and providing the necessary support;

  3. Believes that, in addition, the National Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and subsequently the special court chamber, can play an important role in elucidating the attempts on the life of Mr. Ndihokubwayo and provide fresh impetus towards holding the perpetrators to account; and therefore hopes that the new parliament will take the necessary measures to ensure that the Commission can start its work as early as possible and put in place the necessary legislative framework for the special chamber and its relationship with the Commission;

  4. Reiterates its wish to be kept informed of any progress made towards bringing criminal proceedings against the one perpetrator of the attempt on Mr. Ndihokubwayo's life, who is currently in the hands of the authorities;

  5. Requests the Secretary General to convey its observations and requests for information to the competent authorities during his visit to Burundi;

  6. Requests the Committee to continue examining this case and report to it at its next session, to be held during the 114th IPU Assembly (May 2006).

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