SOS-TORTURE/BURUNDI REPORT No. 161 ISSUED 12 JANUARY 2019
This report from SOS-Torture/Burundi covers the period between 5 and 12 January 2019 concerning cases of human rights violations in Burundi.
At least two (2) persons were murdered during the period and in different locations and three (3) family members survived a grenade attack in Kirundo province.
The report also mentions twelve (12) cases of arbitrary arrests including six (6) members of the opposition coalition Amizero y’Abarundi and one (1) non-commissioned officer of the army. A man was also seriously injured by members of the imbonerakure militiamen during an arrest operation and in the presence of an administrative officer.
- Violations of the right to life and to physical integrity
- Unidentified individuals murdered Naphal Mpawenimana 60 years, his body was found on Mukoma Hill, Mabayi commune, Cibitoke province (north-west) on 8 January 2019 in the evening. Witnesses report that the victim bore several marks of wounds on his body.
Sos-Torture/Burundi notes that Mabayi police have not yet identified any suspects.
- Unidentified individuals attacked a household in Ntega Commune, Kirundo Province, in the north of the country, on 5 January 2019 in the evening. Witnesses report that the grenade injured Ferdinand Hakizimana (48) and his two children.
Sos-Torture/Burundi notes that Ntega police have not identified any suspects to date. The household targeted by the attack is the home of the brother of the Ntega communal administrator.
- A man named Emmanuel Rambarasi shot dead his wife, Denise Nyabenda (30 years), on Kiyonza Hill, Bugabira Commune, Kirundo Province (North of the country) on January 11, 2019. Witnesses report that the reasons for her act are not known today.
Sos-Torture/Burundi notes that the police announced the arrest of Mr. Rambarasi
- Violations of the right to liberty and physical security
- Members of imbonerakure militiamen seriously injured Ntirongwa 70-years in an arrest operation on Mbizi hill, Kibago commune, Makamba province, southern Burundi, on 4 January 2019. Witnesses report that the violence took place during an operation of arrests of alleged perpetrators of the murder of a trader which occurred the day before in Kibago commune (cf report Sos-Torture Burundi N ° 160: http://sostortureburundi.org/wp-content /uploads/2019/01/SOS-Torture-Burundi-nume%CC%81ro-160.docx).
Sos-Torture/Burundi notes beatings violence inflicted on the victim, which resulted in the hospitalization of Mr. Ntirongwa. Sos-Torture/Burundi notes that none of the perpetrators were arrested, despite the presence of Kibago communal administrator and Makamba intelligence chief during the beating. Sos-Torture/Burundi also notes the arrest of three (3) others suspected of having participated in the murder of the merchant Émile Ntahiraja.
- Police agents arrested Félix Nahimana in Makamba commune and province on January 2, 2019. He is a non-commissioned officer of the Burundian army. Witnesses report that he was arrested by the decision of Makamba governor Gad Niyukuri.
Sos-Torture/Burundi notes an illegal arrest of a serving soldier by the governor of the province and flagrant violation of the law and procedure, while military judicial bodies exist and are empowered to conduct such operations. Relatives report that the arrest is linked to the bad relations between the NCO and his wife. She reportedly denounced her husband, accusing her of wanting to go to Rwanda to join a rebellion. Mr. Nahimana has not been charged to date, but he remains in police custody without any alleged charges against him.
- Police agents arrested Jean Kamwenubusa, Jean Paul, Nizigama, Hazimana, Nsanzurwimo and Claude Bizimana in Murwi commune, Cibitoke province (north-west of the country) on 4 January 2019. Witnesses report that the order of the arrest comes from Murwi municipal administrator for “lack of respect”. Relatives report that the six arrested men are all militants of the opposition coalition Amizero y’Abarundi.
Sos-Torture/Burundi notes arbitrary arrests related to the political convictions of the victims. Relatives report the Murwi communal administrator’s attempts to demand the payment of a bribe of fifty thousand (50,000) Burundian francs per individual in order to be released.
- Police Commissioner Arthemon Niyonkura alias Ntibaheke of Burambi commune arrested Emmanuel Niyonganji, Melance Irambona, Ninteretse Renovat, Pascal Ahishakiye and Jean Bosco Niyomwungere on Busenga hill, Murago zone, Burambi commune, Rumonge province (south of the country) January 10, 2019. Witnesses report that the victims are accused of erasing the writings on the CNDD-FDD ruling party monument in Burambi commune.
Sos-Torture/Burundi notes that the victims, whose accusation has not been proven, were taken to the police cell of Murago zone. Witnesses report that youth from opposition and mostly Tutsi minority groups have been targeted by illegal arrests and detentions since the 2015 crisis.
SOS-Torture/Burundi was initiated with the aim of informing national and international opinion about serious human rights violations under way in Burundi through monitoring reports, particularly on torture, arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances, sexual violence and summary executions.This initiative to inform about the realities of the country followed a series of assassinations of a hundred people killed during the day of 11 and 12 December , 2015 by the police and military on the pretext of pursuing rebels who came to attack military camps on the outskirts of the capital city.The affected zones are said to be contesting the third term of President Nkurunziza namely Musaga, Mutakura, Cibitoke, Nyakabiga, Jabe, the last two being located in the center of the Bujumbura City Council.