Protestors accuse Burundian police of torture

Protestors have accused the police of employing brutal tactics as they try to disperse them. Police have frequently fired at protestors.

Protestors have accused the police of employing brutal tactics as they try to disperse them. Police have frequently fired at protestors.

More than 20 anti-3rd term protestors appeared before the high court of Bujumbura, some alleging to have been tortured while in police custody.

The protestors were rounded up in the early days of anti-President Pierre Nkurunziza protestors in May and June.

Some of the suspects say they were forced to confess to confess to law breaking before criminal investigation officers.

Lawyers confirm these allegations and urge Burundian police to refrain from torturing detainees, as confession under duress is illegal.

“I saw many who were forced to confess. Some were captured on the streets without being in protests, others were arrested as they had paid visit to their friends in police jails, these were beaten into admitting offenses they did not commit,” Renovat Ciza, one of the lawyers representing the protestors.

“This is a pure lie, Burundi police no longer torture detainees,” Pierre Nkurikiye, the police spokesman refuted protestors’ claims.

Meanwhile, protests against the third term have been completely suppressed by the police, but the situation is still tense in Bujumbura neighborhoods.

Many residents continue to flee their homes, it’s rare to spend a day or night without hearing at least one gunshot or grenade explosion.

General Leonard Ngendakumana, the deputy to the leader of the May 13 thwarted coup against Nkurunziza has revealed the renegade generals are behind the string of recent grenade attacks that have paralyzed the capital Bujumbura and other parts of the county.

In an interview with Kenya Television Network (KTN) Sunday July 5, Gen. Ngendakumana, said their disastrous failure in the attempted coup has motivated them to resort to grenade attacks as a way to force President Nkurunziza to change his mind about running for the third term.