In April 1996, following extensive consultations with UN officials, governments and NGOs, ICG published a policy paper on Burundi - a country where some 100 people are being killed every day in ethnic violence and where over 400,000 people are either refugees or internally displaced. Since then, ICG and its Board have been engaged in an intensive lobbying effort to prevent full-scale conflict in Burundi and neighbouring states.
Since the conflict in Zaire, which saw the end of Mobuto's rule, and more recently the fighting in Congo-Brazzaville, the prospect of regional instability has returned. During this period, ICG has been investigating the possibility of a major advocacy effort aimed at developing a regional crisis prevention plan for Central Africa. The first stage of this process began with a reconaissance mission in February 1997.