Burundi: The Army in Crisis

By International Crisis Group
April 5, 2017

Burundi: The Army in Crisis

Photo: U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Erik Cardenas.

As the political crisis in Burundi continues, its army, whose post-war reform to depoliticize and professionalize it was long seen as a model for success, is now being torn apart by numerous defections, purges, and competing factions conducting tit-for-tat assassinations. The institution’s integrity and its ability to remain at the service of the people rather than become the President’s personal militia has been permanently damaged.  The fact that a career in the Army could soon no longer guarantee a good and steady salary could also contribute to further instability. The degradation of Burundi’s military is a clear outcome of the political crisis. Reversing this trend will require resolving the crisis.

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Security Topics: Security Sector Governance