Witness: 28 people shot dead after attacks in Burundi capital

BUJUMBURA, Burundi -- Burundi's political violence escalated Saturday as 28 people were found shot dead in three neighbourhoods in the capital, a day after the government said an unidentified group carried out co-ordinated attacks on three military installations.

See Full Article

A climate of fear has engulfed the capital, Bujumbura, after the sound of battle could be heard throughout the day Friday and sporadic gunfire overnight. Residents hid in their houses leaving only security personnel patrolling the streets.

Some residents ventured out of their houses Saturday but largely remained uneasily in their neighbourhoods.

An eyewitness told The Associated Press he counted 21 bodies with bullet wounds in their heads in the Nyakabiga neighbourhood Saturday morning. Some of the dead had their hands tied behind their backs, said the witness, who insisted on anonymity due to safety concerns.

It could not be independently verified who killed the 21 but another witness blamed government security forces saying they went after the victims in door-to-door searches.

"I fear I can be killed like my friend yesterday, police came to search our house and by chance I escaped. If I had money, I would go buy a passport and flee," said Fidele Muyobera,22, who works as household help.

"What is the international community waiting for? Will they intervene when there are no more people in Burundi?" asked businessman Gerald Bigirimana in Nyakabiga while pointing at one of the bodies lying on the streets.

The body of a 14-year-old boy was found in the Jabe neighbourhood, the witness said. James Ntunzwenimana was shot dead while going to buy sugar, the witness said who spoke on condition of anonymity because he feared for his safety.

Six more bodies were found in Musaga, where the military said their installation was attacked, though residents said more bodies had been taken away by security forces.

Three soldiers were killed in the pre-dawn raid Friday by an unidentified group in the Ngagara, Musaga and Mujejuru areas, said two soldiers who insisted on anonymity for fear of reprisals. The army killed 12 of the attackers and 20 others were arrested, including one who was wounded and is being treated at a military hospital, army spokesman Col. Gaspard Baratuza told state radio.

The United States said it is "deeply alarmed" by the violence in Bujumbura, said a statement released by John Kirby, a State Department spokesman. The U.S. called on neighbouring countries to start urgent negotiations between Burundi's government and the opposition to defuse the situation.

The violence is linked to President Pierre Nkurunziza's third term in office, which many Burundians and foreign observers had opposed as unconstitutional and in violation of a peace accord. The treaty ended a civil war in which 300,000 people were killed between 1993 and 2006.

At least 240 people have been killed since April and about 215,000 others have fled to neighbouring countries, according to the United Nations. Several hundred people have also been imprisoned for opposing Nkurunziza's re-election in July this year.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Australian dad says he followed hunch in hiring copter that found injured son

    World News CTV News
    SYDNEY, Australia - The father of a teenager who spent 30 hours trapped in a car wreck in Australian woods says he followed his intuition by hiring the helicopter that found his seriously injured son. Source
  • Journalist Sally Armstrong sees hope for girls in Afghanistan

    World News CTV News
    For more than four decades, journalist, author, filmmaker and human rights activist Sally Armstrong has brought Canadians stories about the plights facing women in conflict zones like Bosnia and Iraq -- work that saw her named an Officer of the Order of Canada on Dec. Source
  • Wallaby hops across Sydney Harbor Bridge, captured uninjured

    World News CTV News
    SYDNEY, Australia -- A wayward wallaby disrupted downtown traffic by bounding across the Sydney Harbor Bridge on Tuesday with police in pursuit. The adult male was captured without any apparent serious injury and is expected to be released back into the wild within days. Source
  • Wallaby hops across Sydney Harbour Bridge, captured uninjured

    World News CTV News
    SYDNEY, Australia -- A wayward wallaby disrupted downtown traffic by bounding across the Sydney Harbour Bridge on Tuesday with police in pursuit. The adult male was captured without any apparent serious injury and is expected to be released back into the wild within days. Source
  • Thai junta boss eyes staying on with little stopping him

    World News CTV News
    BANGKOK -- When Prayuth Chan-Ocha seized control of Thailand in a military coup, he vigorously denounced politicians as responsible for the country's ills and positioned himself and his fellow generals as the cure. Four years on, with many of the country's problems still festering and the public growing impatient for long-delayed elections, the junta leader made a declaration that for many seemed to confirm suspicions that he planned to stay in power long past any polls. Source
  • 89 vessels broke speed limit designed to protect North Atlantic right whales

    Canada News CBC News
    At least 89 vessels exceeded the speed limit in the Gulf of St. Lawrence in the first three weeks after it was imposed last summer to help protect North Atlantic right whales, a document obtained by CBC News shows. Source
  • Teenager leads deputies to California house where 12 others locked up

    World News CTV News
    PERRIS, Calif. -- Authorities say an emaciated teenager led deputies to a California home where her 12 brothers and sisters were locked up in filthy conditions, with some of them malnourished and chained to beds. Source
  • Efforts underway to break up ice jams that flooded Quebec City neighbourhood

    Canada News CTV News
    QUEBEC -- Authorities warned Monday there could be more evacuations after weekend flooding forced residents out of about 40 homes in a Quebec city neighbourhood. Heavy equipment had to be brought in to help break up ice jams on the St. Source
  • Two Fond du Lac teens take own lives as community recovers from plane crash

    Canada News CTV News
    A small northern Saskatchewan First Nation is once again in mourning after two teenagers killed themselves in recent weeks. The suicides in Fond du Lac came as the community recovers from a Dec. 13 plane crash that led to the death of 19-year-old Arson Fern Jr. Source
  • N.S. man arrested after home nearly demolished with front-end loader

    Canada News CTV News
    A 51-year-old suspect is in police custody after an early morning rampage that saw him allegedly attempt to level a home with a front-end loader on Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Island. According to police, the demolition derby began around 5 a.m. Source