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Burundi Finally Opens Borders With Rwanda

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The Burundian government announced on Saturday that it had opened all its borders with neighbours saying ‘Burundi is now accessible’, according to a tweet by the security minister.

Imipaka yose ihuza u Burundi n’ibihugu by’abaturanyi irafunguye. U Burundi ni nyabagendwa,” the tweet in Kirundi language stated loosely translated, all borders connecting Burundi to neighbouring countries are open. Burundi is now accessible.

The Rwanda-Burundi border was initially closed in 2015 following a diplomatic row.

According to the Burundian authorities they had been demanding Rwanda to handover alleged perpetrators of the attempted coup in Burundi in 2015.

The issue of alleged suspects, currently living in exile in Rwanda, has not been officially resolved and was a precondition to normalise relations between the two countries.

The border reopening follows a recent demand by President Ruto William of Kenya that EAC Partner States knock off barriers that impede trade across the bloc.

President Evariste Ndayashimiye while attending the 60th Independence anniversary in Uganda called for doubled efforts towards integration of the region.

“My dearest wish is to see an integrated East Africa and a united Africa,” he said on October 9.

“It is our place as leaders and citizens of the EAC region to work together so that we can transform our borders which today stand out as barriers and convert them to bridges so that goods, services and people can move across East Africa without any impediments,” Ruto said while addressing Ugandans at their 60th independence celebrations in the capital Kampala.

Ruto said the EAC should lead the way towards the realisation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).


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