Burundian forces fired shots at anti-government protesters
Amnesty International says Burundian security forces have violently suppressed anti-government demonstrations in the East African country, and fatally shot protesters running away from them during rallies against President Pierre Nkurunziza bid’s for a third term in office.
“Burundian authorities sought not just to disperse demonstrations, but to punish protesters for expressing their political views,” Amnesty International said in a report entitled “Braving Bullets” and released on Thursday.
“They used excessive and disproportionate force, including lethal force, against protesters, at times shooting unarmed protesters running away from them,” the report added.
Amnesty said that Burundian police offers viewed all protesters as rebellious and attempting to overthrow the incumbent government.
“Treating largely peaceful demonstrators and entire residential areas as if they were part of an insurrection was counter-productive and escalated protests rather than defusing them,” the report read.