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"The engagement by representatives of both Government and opposition in Arusha opens the way to a credible dialogue amongst all Burundian stakeholders. President Mkapa's personal engagement as facilitator and his commitment to protect the principles of the Arusha Agreements were critical to achieve this.
The regional dialogue, as mandated by the Heads of State of the East African Community (EAC), is the only way forward to peacefully resolving this crisis. All sides should seize this opportunity and engage actively in the process in good faith and without delay.
As President Mkapa recognized, the voices of all those who can contribute to a political solution should be heard - including all those who could not attend this round. The EU supports President Mkapa in reiterating the importance of inclusivity to the success of this dialogue process, and equally on the need for all sides immediately to cease violence, acts of torture and political detentions".