Four killed in Bujumbura violence, dozens of weapons seized

Suspected would be assailants gunned down by the Burundian police.

Suspected would be assailants gunned down by the Burundian police.

Three gunmen were killed in the capital Bujumbura during a fierce gunfire that broke out Friday morning when a group of assailants tried to ambush a high ranking police officer.

According to Domitien Niyonkuru, Bujumbura city police commander, at around 10 o’clock, a group of unknown armed men staged an ambush at Peuple Murundi road targeting General Godfrey Manirambona aka Wakenya, the commander of Specialized Units within the National Police , prompting an intense confrontation between police and the assailants.

“Thanks to God, the General, commander of Specialized Units within the National Police of Burundi, was not in his vehicle,” the city police commander said.

Police Commander Niyonkuru revealed besides the three gunmen who were killed, two others were captured and dozens of weapons including two rocket launchers, rifles of different types, numerous ammunitions, a grenade and police uniforms were seized.

Several vehicles were slightly damaged during fire exchange between police and the attackers.
Following the incident, traffic on the main roadways of 28 Novembre and Peuple Murundi was blocked for several hours.

According to the city police commander, the gunmen were using a stolen vehicle, the owner of the car Athanase Mbonabuca, former governor of the Northern Province of Kayanza reported it missing last weekend.

The gunfire occurred not far from the neighborhoods of Jabe and Bwiza, two of the main opposition strongholds. Police cordoned off the two localities, blocking all in and outward traffic for several hours.

Elsewhere in the capital, a woman, working for the Regideso, a water and electricity distribution company in Burundi, is reported to have been sexually assaulted before being slain Thursday night in the Southern neighborhood of Musaga.

Despite these routine deadly incidents, the Burundian government maintains the country is 99% safe and peaceful save for the “minor and isolated” cases that should not impact the lives of citizens.

This as the government continues to be under international pressure to resume peace talks with all political stakeholders in an effort end the ongoing crisis that broke out in April following the announcement of President Pierre Nkurunziza’s controversial third term move.

About 300 people are believed to have been killed since the breakout of the crisis, while 200,000 others have been forced to exile in Rwanda, Tanzania, DRC and Uganda.