April 30, 2015 / 10:22 AM / 4 years ago

Burundi president told U.S. diplomat protests against him illegal - spokesman

BUJUMBURA (Reuters) - Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza told a senior U.S. diplomat on Thursday that protests in the capital against his presidency were illegal, but added that the opposition would not be restricted, Nkurunziza’s spokesman said.

“(Nkurunziza) said political space would be respected and there is no restriction whatsoever to anybody who is engaged in political competition,” spokesman Gervais Abayeho told reporters after Nkurunziza’s meeting with U.S. diplomat Tom Malinowski.

Abayeho said Nkurunziza told Malinowski that the rallies were “illegal and that most parts of the country are peaceful”.

Reporting by Edmund Blair, writing by Drazen Jorgic; Editing by Dominic Evans

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