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European Commission - Press release

EU mobilises additional €5 million for Burundi regional refugee crisis

Brussels, 21 December 2018

The Commission has allocated additional €5 million to address the urgent needs of Burundian refugees living in neighbouring countries.

For 2018, the EU's total humanitarian response to the Burundi regional refugee crisis therefore amounts to €13 million.

"The region is suffering a largely forgotten and heavily underfunded refugee crisis. Most Burundian refugees currently seek refuge in Tanzania and Rwanda. But the majority of them lacks access to basic goods and services, including food. The EU is therefore scaling up its response in the region and providing much needed humanitarian assistance,” said Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides.

The additional support helps humanitarian organisations to provide assistance to Burundian refugees living in Tanzania and Rwanda. It particularly contributes to addressing previously unmet food, nutrition and protection needs.


The Great Lakes region is characterised by a number of crises. In Burundi, an initially political crisis triggered a major socio-economic crisis and slowly turned into a humanitarian crisis. With about 400 000 Burundians seeking refuge in neighbouring countries, the situation has a significant regional impact. The majority of Burundian refugees remain in Tanzania and rely on international assistance to meet their basic needs. The situation continues to be one of the world's most under-funded humanitarian crises.

The European Union is closely monitoring the Burundi crisis and has provided over €57 million in humanitarian funding since its beginning in April 2015. The funding is mainly allocated to humanitarian organisations for the assistance to Burundian refugees in the region.

For more information

Factsheet - Burundi


Press contacts:

General public inquiries: Europe Direct by phone 00 800 67 89 10 11 or by email

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