Three injured in Bujumbura violence, 25 killed during festive season

Pierre Nkurikiye, Police Spokesman

Pierre Nkurikiye, Police Spokesman

Three people were injured Monday, in violent clashes in the Burundian capital Bujumbura.

Heavy gunshots and bombshells could be heard Monday morning in Bujumbura. Two of the victims sustained injuries as two bombs were propelled by grenade launchers around in Bwiza Zone by unidentified men.

Pierre Nkurikiye, police spokesman said during a press conference two of the injured were women and one was due to undergo surgery to amputate her leg.

He said security forces intervened and managed to seize an unexploded bomb and apprehended one suspect as investigation into the attacks ensues to “nab those criminals and bring them to justice.”

The third person was injured earlier in Musaga neighborhood following a grenade explosion. Nkurikiye added three other grenades exploded in this area and in Otraco without causing any damages.

Pierre Nkurikiye lauded security forces for keeping the peace during the just concluded festive season.

“Despite rumors that prevailed that these celebrations would not take place, based on the December 11th terrorist attacks, major events which traditionally mark this period such as Crusades, night prayers, dancing parties, outings to public places such as beaches, markets, shops, bus stations, churches, pubs and other leisure areas were secure and were held in all tranquility across the country,” he said.

The police spokesman however conceded grenade explosions were reported in Bujumbura during the holidays, particularly in Rohero, Mutakura, Cibitoke, Buyenzi and Musaga.

Nkurikiye also revealed violent incidents were reported across the country saying a policeman killed a mother and her baby in the Eastern Province of Ruyigi, and two suspected thieves were beaten to death by angry residents in Northern Burundi.

According to the police, 25 people lost their lives during Christmas and New Year celebrations. 14 died in road accidents.
Burundi, especially the capital Bujumbura has been shaken by violence that was triggered by President Pierre Nkurunziza’s decision to pursue the third term earlier last year.

Hundreds have been killed, and over 220,000 are languishing in refugee camps in neighbouring countries.

The government in Bujumbura has rejected the African Union proposal to deploy troops in Burundi to stop the deadly violence and there has been no progress on the dialogue front. Meanwhile, many continue to believe and to warn the Central

African nation is tilting towards a civil war or genocide although the authorities in Bujumbura have dismissed “the genocide” narrative.