Geographic and Governmental Profile of Burundi

Background
Burundi's first democratically elected president was assassinated in October 1993 after only 100 days in office, triggering widespread ethnic violence between Hutu and Tutsi factions. More than 200,000 Burundians perished during the conflict that spanned almost a dozen years. Hundreds of thousands of Burundians were internally displaced or became refugees in neighboring countries. An internationally brokered power-sharing agreement between the Tutsi-dominated government and the Hutu rebels in 2003 paved the way for a transition process that led to an integrated defense force, established a new constitution in 2005, and elected a majority Hutu government in 2005. The government of President Pierre NKURUNZIZA, who was reelected in 2010, continues to face many political and economic challenges.
Location
Central Africa, east of Democratic Republic of the Congo
Geographic coordinates
3 30 S, 30 00 E
Continent / Subcontinent
Africa
Area
total:
27,830 sq km
rank:
147
land:
25,680 sq km
water:
2,150 sq km
Area - comparative
slightly smaller than Maryland
Land boundaries
total:
974 km
border countries:
Democratic Republic of the Congo 233 km, Rwanda 290 km, Tanzania 451 km
Coastline
0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims
none (landlocked)
Climate
equatorial; high plateau with considerable altitude variation (772 m to 2,670 m above sea level); average annual temperature varies with altitude from 23 to 17 degrees centigrade but is generally moderate as the average altitude is about 1,700 m; average annual rainfall is about 150 cm; two wet seasons (February to May and September to November), and two dry seasons (June to August and December to January)
Terrain
hilly and mountainous, dropping to a plateau in east, some plains
Elevation extremes
lowest point:
Lake Tanganyika 772 m
highest point:
Heha 2,670 m
Natural resources
nickel, uranium, rare earth oxides, peat, cobalt, copper, platinum, vanadium, arable land, hydropower, niobium, tantalum, gold, tin, tungsten, kaolin, limestone
Land use
arable land:
35.57%
permanent crops:
13.12%
other:
51.31% (2005)
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Irrigated land
230 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
3.6 cu km (1987)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
total:
0.29 cu km/yr (17%/6%/77%)
per capita:
38 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards
flooding; landslides; drought
Environment - current issues
soil erosion as a result of overgrazing and the expansion of agriculture into marginal lands; deforestation (little forested land remains because of uncontrolled cutting of trees for fuel); habitat loss threatens wildlife populations
Environment - international agreements
party to:
Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified:
Law of the Sea
Geography - note
landlocked; straddles crest of the Nile-Congo watershed; the Kagera, which drains into Lake Victoria, is the most remote headstream of the White Nile
Country name
conventional long form:
Republic of Burundi
conventional short form:
Burundi
local long form:
Republique du Burundi/Republika y'u Burundi
local short form:
Burundi
former:
Urundi
Government type
republic
Capital
name:
Bujumbura
geographic coordinates:
3 22 S, 29 21 E
time difference:
UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions
17 provinces; Bubanza, Bujumbura Mairie, Bujumbura Rural, Bururi, Cankuzo, Cibitoke, Gitega, Karuzi, Kayanza, Kirundo, Makamba, Muramvya, Muyinga, Mwaro, Ngozi, Rutana, Ruyigi
Independence
1 July 1962 (from UN trusteeship under Belgian administration)
Constitution
ratified by popular referendum 28 February 2005
Legal system
mixed legal system of Belgian civil law and customary law
International law organization participation
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
Suffrage
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch
chief of state:
President Pierre NKURUNZIZA - Hutu (since 26 August 2005); First Vice President Therence SINUNGURUZA - Tutsi (since 29 August 2010); Second Vice President Gervais RUFYIKIRI - Hutu (since 29 August 2010); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government:
President Pierre NKURUNZIZA - Hutu (since 26 August 2005); First Vice President Therence SINUNGURUZA - Tutsi (since 29 August 2010); Second Vice President Gervais RUFYIKIRI - Hutu (since 29 August 2010)
cabinet:
Council of Ministers appointed by president
elections:
the president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); elections last held on 28 June 2010 (next to be held in 2015); vice presidents nominated by the president, endorsed by parliament
election results:
Pierre NKURUNZIZA elected president by popular vote; Pierre NKURUNZIZA 91.6%, other 8.4%; note - opposition parties withdrew from the election due to alleged government interference in the electoral process
Legislative branch
bicameral Parliament or Parlement, consists of a Senate (54 seats; 34 members elected by indirect vote to serve five-year terms, with remaining seats assigned to ethnic groups and former chiefs of state) and a National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (minimum 100 seats, 60% Hutu and 40% Tutsi with at least 30% being women; additional seats appointed by a National Independent Electoral Commission to ensure ethnic representation; members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections:
last held on 23 July 2010 (next to be held in 2015)
election results:
Senate - percent of vote by party - NA%; seats by party - TBD; National Assembly - percent of vote by party - CNDD-FDD 81.2%, UPRONA 11.6%, FRODEBU 5.9%, others 1.3%; seats by party - CNDD-FDD 81, UPRONA 17, FRODEBU 5, other 3
Judicial branch
Supreme Court or Cour Supreme; Constitutional Court; High Court of Justice (composed of the Supreme Court and the Constitutional Court)
Political parties and leaders
governing parties:
Burundi Democratic Front or FRODEBU [Leonce NGENDAKUMANA]; National Council for the Defense of Democracy - Front for the Defense of Democracy or CNDD-FDD [Jeremie NGENDAKUMANA]; Unity for National Progress or UPRONA [Bonaventure NIYOYANKANA]
a multiparty system was introduced after 1998, included are: National Council for the Defense of Democracy or CNDD [Leonard NYANGOMA]; National Resistance Movement for the Rehabilitation of the Citizen or MRC-Rurenzangemero [Epitace BANYAGANAKANDI]; Party for National Redress or PARENA [Jean-Baptiste BAGAZA]
Political pressure groups and leaders
Forum for the Strengthening of Civil Society or FORSC [Pacifique NININAHAZWE] (civil society umbrella organization); Observatoire de lutte contre la corruption et les malversations economiques or OLUCOME [Gabriel RUFYIRI] (anti-corruption pressure group)
other:
Hutu and Tutsi militias (loosely organized)
International organization participation
ACP, AfDB, AU, CEPGL, COMESA, EAC, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (subscriber), ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OIF, OPCW, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the US
chief of mission:
Ambassador Angele NIYUHIRE
chancery:
Suite 212, 2233 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone:
[1] (202) 342-2574
FAX:
[1] (202) 342-2578
Diplomatic representation from the US
chief of mission:
Ambassador Pamela J. H. SLUTZ
embassy:
Avenue des Etats-Unis, Bujumbura
mailing address:
B. P. 1720, Bujumbura
telephone:
[257] 223454
FAX:
[257] 222926
Flag description
divided by a white diagonal cross into red panels (top and bottom) and green panels (hoist side and fly side) with a white disk superimposed at the center bearing three red six-pointed stars outlined in green arranged in a triangular design (one star above, two stars below); green symbolizes hope and optimism, white purity and peace, and red the blood shed in the struggle for independence; the three stars in the disk represent the three major ethnic groups: Hutu, Twa, Tutsi, as well as the three elements in the national motto: unity, work, progress
National symbol(s)
lion
National anthem
name:
"Burundi Bwacu" (Our Beloved Burundi)
lyrics/music:
Jean-Baptiste NTAHOKAJA/Marc BARENGAYABO
adopted 1962
Data source 1: All Above textual data, maps and flags were extracted from The World Factbook which was prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency and made available on the following link: The World Factbook. Lebanese Economy Forum is not sponsered or affiliated, in any way, by the US Central Intelligence Agency
Data source 2: Plots and Charts are constructed using the world bank public data catalog which can be viewed by visiting the following link: World Bank Data Catalog. Lebanese Economy Forum is not sponsored or affiliated, in any way, by the worldbank

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