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Retired Burundi army officer shot dead in the capital

A senior Burundian retired army officer was Wednesday morning shot dead in front of his house in Ngagara in the north of the Burundian capital Bujumbura, a local administration authority said.


"Retired Colonel Lucien Rufyiri was killed by unidentified gunmen who shot him dead around 11:00 (09:00 GMT) in front of his house in Ngagara as he was returning from the office of Ngagara zone where he had gone to seek identification documents. After killing him and injuring his son who had come to open the gate for him, the gunmen ran away," said Imelde Ndikuriyo, head of Ngagara zone.

According to her, the assassination of retired Colonel Lucien Rufyiri happened about 20 minutes after the victim had left the office of Ngagara zone.

"I was informed about the crime by one of the local leaders and when I went to the scene of the crime, I found Rufyiri’s corpse lying near his car," said Ndikuriyo.

The assassination Rufyiri, a retired Tutsi from the Burundian army before the integration of Hutus from Burundi’s ex-rebel groups, follows the assassination on April 25, 2016 of Brigadier General Athanase Kararuza in the capital Bujumbura - another Tutsi from the Burundian army before the integration of Hutus from Burundi’s ex-rebel groups.

General Kararuza was a senior adviser in charge of security at the office of Burundian First Vice-President Gaston Sindimwo.

Retired Burundian senior army officers from the Tutsi minority group have been the target of selective killings following the controversial third term bid of Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza since April 2015 which he won in July.

Burundi is facing a political turmoil that broke out since April 2015 following the announcement by Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza that he would be seeking a third term.

His candidature, which was opposed by the opposition and civil society groups, resulted into a wave of protests, violence and even a failed coup on May 13, 2015.

Over 451 persons are reported to have been killed since then while some 270,000 citizens sought exile in neighboring countries.

Jimirasire

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