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Assistant High Commissioner in Burundi

Briefing notes

Assistant High Commissioner in Burundi

2 April 2004

Assistant High Commissioner Kamel Morjane arrived yesterday in Burundi, where he had meetings with other UN agencies and donor governments. Today, he is scheduled to meet senior government officials, including President Domitien Ndayizeye.

Tomorrow, Mr. Morjane will go to Ruyigi province, where a new transit centre has opened for returnees and where we are currently setting up a new office. Since the opening of a new border crossing point at Gisuru into Ruyigi province in late January, the number of returnees has increased five-fold. An average of 2,400 refugees come back via Gisuru each week. Our fleet of 43 heavy vehicles in Burundi shuttles back and forth, operating several shifts each day to bring assistance items to the transit centres and to take the returning refugees to their final destinations. More than 27,400 Burundi refugees have returned home from Tanzania so far this year through three crossing points, Gisuru, Kobero and Gahumo.