African Politics and Policy

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What’s really outrageous

A Burundian diplomat compared a UN’s Committee of Inquiry (into Burundi’s alleged human rights violations) to ‘slave trade’. UN officials found the comment offensive and were, reportedly, outraged.

The Burundian diplomat’s choice of words was very unfortunate. But if the government authorities in Burundi have violated human rights, as the press has suggested, we’d be more outraged by what bad leaders do to their own people than by the words they use.

We should be very outraged by what has happened in South Sudan, where children were used as soldiers, were killed, raped, murdered, abused–

We should be outraged by all the atrocities that have been perpetrated, by the fact that the perpetrators have not yet (or not always) be brought to justice, by the fact that no accountability has been ensured, by the fact that political leaders who allowed these atrocities to be committed are still (or are back) in office, by the fact that leaders have used their power and authority to shield their followers from prosecution.

This is what’s truly outrageous and this is what UN officials and the international community should be truly outraged about as much as we are and we have been for years.


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