Burundi to withdraw AU troops from Somalia Over 11 months salaries unpaid by EU

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Burundi to withdraw AU troops from Somalia over salaries unpaid by EU
Bujumbura – Burundi will withdraw its 5,400 troops serving as part of an African Union contingent in Somalia because the European Union has stopped paying their salaries, according to inter-governmental correspondence seen by dpa on Monday.
The presidency instructed the Defence and Foreign Ministries to start pulling out the troops, which had not been paid for a year.

Burundi is the second-largest contributor after Uganda to the 22,000-strong AU mission, funded largely by the EU, which is helping the Somali government battle the radical Islamist group al-Shabaab.

Burundi would lodge a legal complaint against the AU over the unpaid salaries, the presidency wrote to the two ministries. Analysts estimated the arrears at more than 60 million dollars.

The EU in March suspended direct financial support to Burundi over political violence following the election victory in July 2015 of President Pierre Nkurunziza, who sought a third term in office despite the constitutional two-term limit. Hundreds have been killed by police and armed opposition groups.

Dpa was unable to obtain a comment from the EU in Brussels.

Meanwhile On December Last Year the Burundi’s  President Pierre Nkurunziza Has threatened to pull out almostO 5,500 troops contributing to the African Union mission in Somalia over nearly a year of unpaid allowances, in another sign of tensions with the force’s largest donor, the European Union.
If there is no payment by January, Burundi will recall the more than 5,400 troops from the 22,000-strong regional force protecting Somalia’s weak government from al-Shabab extremist attacks, President Pierre Nkurunziza said.
Burundi’s troops have not been paid allowances for 11 months amid a standoff between Burundi’s government and the EU after the EU accused Burundian authorities of human rights abuses.

SOURCE:HORNDIPLOMAT & DPA

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