Tanzania Begins Sending Burundian Refugees Home

Nearly 600 Burundian refugees have been sent home from Tanzania, making up the first large group to be repatriated as part of a mass deportation operation that began this week. Nestor Bimenyimana, Burundi's general manager for repatriation, said the refugees are returning voluntarily because the country's security and political conditions have improved dramatically. Conflict erupted in Burundi in 2015 over a third term for President Pierre Nkurunziza.

A young Burundian refugee waits in Nduta camp, which is located in north-western Tanzania in 2017.

A Burundian refugee child sits on the ground in Tanzania

Conflict erupted in Burundi in 2015 over a third term for President Pierre Nkurunziza. The human rights abuses and persecution of political opponents that followed caused hundreds of thousands of Burundians to flee to neighboring countries.

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