Prayers for Burundi

Posted by Sarah Caughey on Thu, 22 Sep 2011 | 0 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to del.icio.us Post this to Facebook

CMS Ireland is urging friends and supporters to pray for Burundi as fears that the nation may slip back to instability and violence in the aftermath of escalating violence, with gunmen attacking a crowded bar in Bujumbura earlier this week.

Niall Manogue, Partnership Coordinator for the Mid Africa Region, spoke with CMS Ireland Mission Partner Alison Gill at the start of the week. She assures us that she is safe and well. Although this most recent incident was not close to Alison’s home, she, with her partner organisations, continue to monitor the security situation.

News reports indicate that unidentified gunmen entered a crowded bar near the Burundi capital, Bujumbura earlier this week. It is estimated that 36 people were killed during the attack which is reported to have lasted around 20 minutes. This is reported to be the deadliest attack in the Central African country this year. No group has yet claimed responsibility for this attack. The BBC World News website indicates that a local hospital is reportedly unable to cope with the wounded, with an unidentified doctor saying that the hospital where he works was “totally overwhelmed” by the numbers.

Burundi continues to struggle as it emerges from the 13 years of civil war that erupted in 1993 and left some 300,000 people dead. Burundi has enjoyed relative peace, with only sporadic violence since the last remaining rebel group, Forces for National Liberations (FNL) set aside and joined the Government in 2009 after two decades of insurgency.

For an insight into the history of Burundi, BBC World News has a timeline of events up to present day. “Click here”: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-13087604

Attacks against civilians and soldiers have intensified in the wake of the presidential elections in 2010 which were boycotted by the opposition. Reuters) reports the analysts are concerned that tit-for-tat fighting between security forces and former militia fighters risks blowing up into a full scale rebellion.

This is a crucial time to support our Global Partners and Mission Personnel in Burundi as they seek to show God’s love and care in this troubled nation. Particularly pray for Alison’s work in trauma healing, as she provides training to clergy as they work in communities across Burundi to bring restoration and healing after years of civil unrest.

Please join with us in prayer.

(SOURCES: BBC; Telegraph; Reuters)

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