Burundi conflict: ‘no signs of improving’ in 2017

A further 140,000 Burundian refugees are expected to flee to Tanzania in 2017, as the crisis shows ‘no signs of improving.’ Pictured, Burundian refugees being transported to Kigoma. Photo: Daniel Hayduk

The ongoing crisis in Burundi shows ‘no signs of improving’ over the next year as 140,000 more Burundian refugees are expected to flee to Tanzania in 2017, says the UN’s refugee agency, the UNHCR.

“It is expected that people will continue to flee to neighbouring countries, mostly to Tanzania, where some 180,000 refugees are already accommodated in three camps,” says a report by the UNHCR.

“In October 2016, food rations were almost cut for Burundian refugees living in Tanzania, but fortunately donor support averted a crisis, allowing the assistance to continue.”

The report says over $217 million USD (471 billion TSH) will be needed for operational costs in 2017 — 40 percent being designated for food, health and nutrition.

Tanzanian aid organizations have been struggling to get adequate support for the influx of refugees who are crammed into three overcrowded camps near Kigoma and warned the situation ‘will only get worse.’

The Burundi crisis was sparked when president Pierre Nkurunziza announced plans to run for a third term, which he won.

Tanzania is the largest host of Burundian refugees.

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About the Author

Daniel Hayduk

Daniel is Dar Post’s news director. When not in the newsroom, he spends his days helping NGOs across the continent find their creative side.