BUJUMBURA, Burundi – Burundi's government says it will not participate in peace talks with the opposition because it cannot negotiate with fugitives from justice.
The government did not send negotiators to Arusha, Tanzania, where talks to end Burundi's crisis were set to resume Thursday.
Government spokesman Philippe Nzobonariba said in a statement late Wednesday that the government "cannot sit together with people pursued by our justice."
Burundi has been plagued by violence since April 2015, when President Pierre Nkurunziza decided he would seek a disputed third term, which he later won.
Hundreds of people have been killed in the ensuing violence, and at least one armed group has been launched against Nkurunziza.
The group CNARED, which unites some opposition politicians now living in exile, said it was ready for the resumption of talks.