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Burundi Intervention

ACCORD started working in Burundi in 1995, and opened its first in-country office in Bujumbura in 2003. In 2004 ACCORD opened two additional offices in the towns of Ruyigi and Rumonge, followed by the opening of a fourth office in the town of Rutana in beginning 2008. Since 1995, ACCORD’s work in the country focuses on facilitating interactions among key stakeholders in Burundi and between relevant stakeholders and their counterparts in Africa. This included second track assistance during the Arusha negotiations. In addition, activities in Burundi concentrate on skills development to build the capacity of community leaders, civil society, political actors and other relevant roleplayers in conflict prevention, management and transformation. Lastly, ACCORD contributes to ensuring that the ongoing process of the repatriation and reintegration of Burundian refugees takes place in a smooth and conflict-free manner by providing legal assistance and mediation services to both returning refugees as well as welcoming communities (Please see the chronology of ACCORD’s activities in Burundi).

Burundi is a small, landlocked country in Central Africa (27 830 km2), with approximately 7 million inhabitants. The country gained independence in 1962, where after it experienced on-and-off, latent and manifest conflict. More than half a million people died following the crises of 1965, 1972, 1988, 1991 and 1993. The Arusha Peace and Reconciliation Agreement for Burundi which was signed in 2000 as well as the subsequent cease-fire agreements with various rebel movements that did not participate in the Arusha peace talks paved the way for the holding of democratic elections in 2005. This marked the beginning of the country’s post-conflict reconstruction phase which focuses on consolidating the relative peace that the country is currently experiencing by continuing with efforts towards a peace agreement with the one remaining rebel movement, Forces Nationales de la Libération (FNL) and initiating processes to allow the country to come to terms with its past. Naturally, rebuilding the Burundi’s economy after years of conflict is paramount to the success of peacebuilding efforts in the country.

Throughout its involvement in Burundi, ACCORD has been working closely with locally-based Burundian structures, both at a governmental and non-governmental level. The idea of working with local structures ensures that the process of contributing to peace in Burundi becomes a joint initiative between ACCORD and local organisations in the country which ensures sustainability of efforts. ACCORD is an impartial conflict management organisation that thrives on a principle of not taking sides in any conflict situation but rather seeks to assist the parties reach a settlement on their own terms. Indeed it is this philosophy that has earned ACCORD respect in a number of countries where it has worked and continues to work, including Burundi.

The overall goal of the ACCORD Burundi Intervention is to contribute to post-conflict peacebuilding through the promotion of peace, reconciliation and effective governance in Burundi. The Intervention aims to achieve this goal through doing the following:

  • strengthening the capacity of civil society and other stakeholders to respond to conflict through conducting capacity building workshops in conflict management;
  • promoting dialogue towards peace and reconciliation through dialogue sessions; and building capacity for conflict management on a community level through conducting mediations and capacity building workshops in conflict management and legal matters.

The Burundi Intervention’s long term vision consists of enabling the various stakeholders to internalise the skills provided by ACCORD and utilise them toward sustainable peace in Burundi. One way the Burundi Intervention is already achieving this goal is through the capacity building workshops in conflict management that have been conducted for community leaders. Following the relevant workshops ACCORD has noted more than 250 cases that were successfully resolved by community leaders without assistance from the ACCORD Burundi Intervention staff. Taking into account this experience and others, ACCORD Burundi Intervention will continue to build local capacity throughout the country for the constructive resolution of disputes, as well as the promotion of dialogue and reconciliation.

Latest News from ACCORD

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TfP/ACCORD participate in Integrated Gender and Sexual and Gender Based Violence Course for Police Advisors in Peace Missions

The Training for Peace Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) have participated in an Integrated Gender and SGBV Course for Police Advisors in Peace Missions. The course seeks to build the foundational knowledge, skills and personal qualities of participants to more effectively...

16-10-2014 in Peacekeeping

ACCORD/TfP co-ordinate Leadership Capacity Building and Strategy Formulation Workshop on Sexual Exploitation and Abuse for AMISOM

Sexual exploitation and sexual abuse (SEA) are fundamental violations of humanitarian and protection principles of civilians during armed conflict. While any violations or abuses of power are the responsibility of the individual, the deploying entity also has a responsibility to...

16-10-2014 in Peacekeeping

TfP/ACCORD participate at AUC-OHCHR Joint Consultative Meeting on Cooperation on Human Rights in Peace Operations

The Training for Peace (TfP) Programme at ACCORD has participated in an African Union Commission (AUC) – Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) joint consultative meeting on cooperation on human rights in peace operations. The purpose of...

16-10-2014 in Peacekeeping

TfP/ACCORD participate in Integrated Mission Planning and Mission Support Training Harmonization and Standardization Workshop

The Training for Peace (TfP) programme at ACCORD participated in the Integrated Mission Planning and Mission Support (IMP & MS) Training Harmonization and Standardization Workshop from 29 September to 03 October 2014 at the SADC RPTC in Harare, Zimbabwe. The...

16-10-2014 in Peacekeeping

TfP/ACCORD undertakes research on role of the Civilian Component in AU Peace Support Operations

The Training for Peace Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) has collaborated with AU Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD) in undertaking a study focusing on the roles of the civilian component in the African-led International Support Mission in the Central African Republic...

16-10-2014 in Peacekeeping

ACCORD leads sessin at Inaugural Meeting of the New Members of the African Union Panel of the Wise

ACCORD has contributed to the Inaugural Meeting of the Panel of the Wise (PW) by leading an interactive session on conflict trends in Africa. The Meeting, which took place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 16-17 September, was organised by the...

15-10-2014 in Peacemaking

ACCORD participates in dialogue on role of parliamentarians in managing migration for development

ACCORD was represented in the African-European Parliamentary Dialogue on Migration and Development which was co-hosted by the Association of European Parliamentarians with Africa (AWEPA) and the Graça Machel Trust. The meeting was held on 2 and 3 October 2014 in...

13-10-2014 in Knowledge Production

ACCORD’s Jannie Malan participates in inter-religious dialogue on the way to peace

As part of its work on religion and conflict, ACCORD was recently represented at the Community of Sant'Egidio's peace conference, which took place from 7 to 9 September 2014 in Belgium.

22-09-2014 in Knowledge Production

ACCORD's Training Unit collaborates with IGAD to train women mediators from Sudan and South Sudan

ACCORD recently partnered with the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) to provide training aimed at empowering women mediators from Sudan and South Sudan. A total of 20 Sudanese and South Sudanese women participated in the five-day training, which focused on...

18-09-2014 in Training

ACCORD trains Burundi youth leaders in election dispute management

In view of the upcoming 2015 elections in Burundi, and as continuation of the country's commitment to ensuring peaceful elections, ACCORD's Burundi Initiative and Training Unit has delivered two training workshops on the management of elections-related disputes for youth wings...

18-09-2014 in Burundi Intervention

ACCORD participates in UNDP experts consultation to critically review reconciliation as a mechanism for conflict prevention and peacebuilding

From 2 to 4 September 2014, the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD), was represented in the Experts Consultation on Reconciliation as a Mechanism for Conflict Prevention and Peacebuilding, hosted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)...

17-09-2014 in Peacebuilding

ACCORD at validation workshop on Draft African Transitional Justice Policy Framework

On 18 and 19 August 2014, the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) was represented at a validation workshop on the Draft African Transitional Justice Policy Framework (ATJPF) held in Johannesburg, South Africa. The workshop was the...

17-09-2014 in Peacebuilding

Training of Trainers in International Humanitarian Law for Somali National Army Officers

In close partnership with ACCORD, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) have organised a Training of Trainers (ToT) Course in International Humanitarian Law (IHL) for Somali National Army (SNA) Officers held in Kampala, Uganda, from 19-28 August 2014. The...

11-09-2014 in Peacekeeping

ACCORD publishes brief on Common African Position on the Post-2015 Development Agenda ahead of UN General Assembly meetings

The latest publication by the ACCORD critically discusses the Common African Position (CAP) on the Post-2015 Development Agenda against lessons learnt from operationalisation of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), particularly relevant due to the fact that the MDGs will lapse...

09-09-2014 in Knowledge Production

ACCORD trains SADC military, police and civilians in mediation, negotiation and gender in peace support operations

The Training for Peace Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) participated in the Exercise AMANI Africa II Pre deployment Courses. This participation contributes to the adequate preparation of the civilians, police and military officers from Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) region who...

04-09-2014 in Peacekeeping

ACCORD receives the Mahatma Gandhi International Award for Reconciliation and Peace

ACCORD has received the Mahatma Gandhi International (MAGI) Award for Reconciliation and Peace, awarded by the Gandhi Development Trust (GDT), for its 22 years of work in promoting peace and the constructive resolution of disputes globally.

28-08-2014 in General

ACCORD partners with UN Peacebuilding Fund for workshop on Political Nature of Peacebuilding

The United Nations (UN) Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO) and the UN Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) field staff have been seeking to develop coherence between one another, and to enhance their relationships with other institutions, especially ACCORD and the governments of PBF...

28-08-2014 in Peacebuilding

ACCORD conducts Electoral Alternate Dispute Resolution workshop with the Electoral Commissioners Forum (ECF) of SADC

From 18-20 August 2014, ACCORD conducted a workshop on election-related Alternate Dispute Resolution Mechanisms with the Electoral Commissioners Forum of the Southern African Development Community (ECF-SADC). This workshop, which convened approximately thirty Chairpersons and Chief Electoral Officers from the election...

26-08-2014 in Elections