Guardians of Peace (Burundi)

Country: Burundi
Details of Formation: According to a US State Department Report (1998), the government created the Guardians of Peace in 1997.
Details of Termination: In 2003, the government set up a three-part demobilisation programme targeting children in the Peace Guards. Shortly after the election in 2005, most members of the militia were disarmed, supported by UN Operations in Burundi.
Purpose: The Guardians of Peace were trained in all provinces to ensure self-defence from rebels in the respective areas. They reportedly destroyed four rebel command posts. They oftentimes acted in joint operations with security forces.
Organisation: Colonel Twagiramungu is said to be responsible for the conception, formation and running of the Peace Guards.
Weapons and Training: The militia underwent military exercises in Northern Burundi in 2001. Members are not armed unless they are patrolling during the night.
Size: The militia comprised around 20,000 members.
Reason for Membership: no information
Treatment of Civilians: As one source suggests, the militia freed two women who had been abducted by rebels. However, in 2002 the parliament condemned crimes such as killing, burning houses and looting villages, perpetrated by the Guardians of Peace against the population.
Other Information: --
References: Information was taken from news sources listed in the PGMD