Burundi troops kill 18 in clashes

2011-11-22 13:14
Bujumbura - Burundian troops killed 18 gunmen in fierce clashes, a government official said on Tuesday, stoking fears that a new rebellion may erupt in the central African nation.

The coffee-producing country has enjoyed relative peace since the Hutu rebel group, Forces for National Liberation, laid down its weapons and joined the government in 2009 after almost two decades of war.

But attacks on civilians and soldiers have intensified since elections last year were widely boycotted by the opposition.

Analysts say fighting between the security forces and former militia fighters risks blowing up into a full-scale insurgency. Authorities routinely blame bandits for the attacks.

The latest clashes happened on Monday in the eastern province of Cankuzo, near the Tanzanian border, the official said.

"There is a group of armed bandits which attacked our province and looted several households. But security forces were informed about the attack and intervened on time, killing eighteen among them," Cankuzo governor, Jean Berchmans Niragira, told Reuters.

An army spokesman, Colonel Gaspard Baratuza, confirmed the incident but gave no further details.

One local resident, who did not want to be named for fear of attack, said the gunmen were armed with machine-guns and that several grenade explosions could be heard.

Pressure is building on President Pierre Nkurunziza to start talks with opposition leaders in exile to prevent a return to a civil war.

Read more on:    burundi  |  east africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Millions of plastic particles in our food!

Scientists and researchers believe that almost five million tons of plastic is dumped in the oceans every year and it’s affecting our food.



Plastic on your plate
Prince George the green prince?
Lean, green, drifiting machine
One man's $1 million vision for an eco Africa

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

Trying to keep time for your social commitments and friendships as well as taking care of work and health obligations can be a...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.