The UN Security Council (UNSC) has voted to deploy a UN police force to restive Burundi, in its toughest measure aimed at helping end over a year of violence in the West African country.
The council adopted a France-drafted resolution Friday authorizing the dispatch of up to 228 officers to the capital, Bujumbura, and throughout Burundi for a preliminary period of one year.
“This is a strong act of preventative diplomacy,” said French Ambassador Francois Delattre, adding that the UN force gives the council “eyes and ears” on the ground to provide early warning of possible mass atrocities.
This is while Burundi has said it would not accept more than 50 UN police forces. The UNSC resolution also called on UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to ensure a “progressive deployment” of the new force to monitor human rights violations and abuses in Burundi.