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Sahara : Burundi announces closure of Laayoune consulate before U-turn

DR
Estimated read time: 1'

Months after it inaugurated a consulate in Laayoune, Burundi announced recently it's closure. The decision was made on grounds of "strategic reasons and reciprocity", the Burundian Foreign MInistry wrote on Twitter on Thursday.

However, the same tweet was deleted without any explanation. The announcement has quickly made headlines in Algeria and the Tindouf camps, without mentioning the tweet deletion.

"Our embassy in Rabat, Morocco, will remain functional and in return Burundi expects the opening of an embassy of the Kingdom of Morocco in Burundi with residence in Bujumbura", the Burundi Foreign Ministry announced in a more diplomatic tone in another tweet that was not deleted.

For the record, Burundi opened it's consulate general in Laayoune on February 28, 2020. Since then, the African country has undergone a change. President Pierre Nkurunziza, close to Morocco,  died on June 9. It was under his presidency that Bujumbura withdrew its recognition of the “Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic” in October 2010 and initiated a rapprochement with Rabat.

Currently, Burundi is led by General Evariste Ndayishimiy who occupied the Ministry of Defense during the Nkurunziza era (2005-2020).

The African country has also decided to close its embassies in Canada and Brazil citing a "rationalization of expenses" of the foreign service.