9 killed in Bujumbura club attack, authorities irked by Kagame’s comments

Burundian police and the military conduct an intense operation in two opposition strongholds in Bujumbura Sunday November 8

Burundian police and the military conduct an intense operation in two opposition strongholds in Bujumbura Sunday November 8

Seven people were killed Saturday night at a bar/club: Au coin des amis in the opposition stronghold of Kanyosha in the Burundian capital Bujumbura and two other succumbed to the their injuries Sunday morning.

According to witnesses, armed men in police uniform came and ordered everyone to lie down and opened fire. Seven people died on the spot, while two other who had sustained injuries in the attack died Sunday morning.

Police responded to the deadly shootings but never apprehended suspected perpetrators.

One of the staff at the popular bar who escaped with injuries said the assailants took money from the clients who were there and shot at one after the other.

“Some of our clients were outside. They were told to enter and lie down. We gave them all what we had including money, and they began shooting us,” he said.

Dr. Jean Bosco Girukwisha, a local leader, says the assailants killed the bar patrons indiscriminately and among the dead includes one Congolese citizen.

“The area of Kanyosha had been peaceful until two days ago, our residents never saw this massacre coming,” Gikrukwisha told this website calling on the residents to remain vigilant and report any suspicious person and or activity.

This deadly attack coincided with the expiration of President Pierre Nkurunziza’s controversial 5-day ultimatum for the public to surrender weapons.

Despite warning from regional leaders and the international community, Burundi security forces swung into action Sunday morning mounting a massive weapons search in the opposition areas of Mutakura and Cibitoke.

Fearing for their safety, huge numbers of residents have fled these two neighbourhoods ahead of the crackdown. Those who remained behind were confined to their homes Sunday as the police and the military searched house by house.

Alain Guillaume Bunyoni,, the Security Minister took part in the operation, appealed to residents owning illegal weapons to hand them back to the authorities.

“We will conduct such operations here until the area is cleaned up of all those weapons. We will do it smoothly, using high techniques and without any harm of people, contrary to what has been said by ill-willed people,” Bunyoni said.

Tension in Bujumbura remains high as residents live in fear and continue to flee their homes.

The international community has expressed concerns about the political rhetoric surrounding Burundi government efforts to retrieve weapons “in the wrong hands”, and many have drawn parallels between the prevailing atmosphere in Burundi today and the days and week leading to the 1994 catastrophic Genocide in Rwanda.

Kagame speaks out, Bujumbura “outraged”

The Rwandan leader President Paul Kagame condemned the daily deadly violence in Burundi and indicated leaders in Bujumbura are partaking in the killings

“Leaders are spending time killing people. Bodies of dead people are scattered everywhere. Refugees are wandering everywhere – women and children – and you want to call this politics? What kind of politics is this?” President Kagame said Friday.

Burundi President’s Office labelled Kagame’s comments outrageous and grotesque posting on Facebook “only the work that we do with our population to secure the country, bring about a true peace and strengthen our democracy, will be the supreme response to our detractors.”