22 March 2019

Burundi: Over 100 Killed in Recurring Burundi Rights Violations

Bujumbura — SOME 107 people have reportedly been killed and 18 others kidnapped this year during violations by state security agents and youth supporting the ruling party in Burundi.

Forty cases of torture, 11 cases of rape and 140 arbitrary arrests have been documented during the period.

The violations documented by human rights groups are in addition to the recorded killing of 453 people, including 81 women, and enforced disappearances of 71 others as well as 298 torture cases in 2018.

International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and Ligue ITEKA have alerted the United Nations' Security Council to the violations blamed on the Imbonerakure youth affiliated with the Burundi governing National Council for the Defense of Democracy-Forces for the Defense of Democracy (CNDD-FDD), agents of the National Intelligence Service, police, military and administrative officials.

"These facts demonstrate that the hunt for real or perceived opponents of the regime has not stopped," FIDH and Ligue ITEKA jointly stated.

The organisations noted that members of the National Congress for Freedom, a new political party set to challenge President Pierre Nkurunziza's CNDD-FDD in next year's elections, continued facing threats and other forms of harassment.

Independent journalists have reportedly been forced into exile.

Authorities also forced the closure of the office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights after 23 years operating in the continent.

Burundi has been in crisis since 2015 when Nkurunziza, in power since 2005, secured a third term in violation of the constitution.

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