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SOS - Torture / Burundi No. 62

February 2017

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SOS - Torture / Burundi
Report No. 62 from 11th to 18th February 2017

Monitoring of cases of torture, arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances and summary executions

This report of SOS-Torture Burundi covers the period from 11th to 18th February 2017 on human rights violations that continue to be committed with impunity in Burundi.

The report refers firstly to the prison situation in Burundi in mid-February 2017. Despite an announcement of the release of prisoners as a result of presidential pardon, the number of prisoners remains very high given the prison accommodation capacity. This report shows a shift from 10,051 inmates to 8,751 inmates between the end of December 2016 and mid-February 2017, being a decrease of 1,300 detainees due to pardon.

At least fifty-three (53) persons were arrested during the period covered, including 50 in the province of Makamba only. The latter were first beaten and wounded by imbonerakure militiamen, who were illegally participating in the arrests. Several of the victims were injured, but were not entitled to compensation for the blows and injuries during the arrest, but only benefited from their release.

The report refers to five (5) persons murdered during the period, in different localities. Among these victims was an activist belonging to FNL opposition party and a guest at their home. The husband of the deceased, also an important member of the FNL, was wounded during the attack.

SOS-Torture Burundi congatulates the admission of its Director, Counsel Armel Niyongere, to the Bar of Brussels as an Advocate. This admission is another step in the struggle against impunity and for the rule of law in Burundi, after Bujumbura’s attempts to deprive some lawyers and human rights defenders of their qualities, to exercise their competence before regional and international mechanisms especially before the International Criminal Court.

The Collective of Lawyers for Victims and Civil Parties of the crimes committed in Burundi of which he is a member, submitted their file containing hundreds of photographs, numerous unpublished documents, videos and testimonies as well as various documents to the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court.

To consult all reports: http://sostortureburundi.org/

The SOS-Torture Campaign / Burundi was initiated with the aim to inform national and international opinion on the serious violations of human rights ongoing in Burundi through monitoring reports including torture, arbitrary arrests, forced disappearances, sexual violence and summary executions. This initiative of the realities of the country follows the slaughter of a hundred persons killed during the day of December 11th and that of December 12th, 2015 by the police and military forces under the pretext of pursuing rebels who came to attack military camps located on the outskirts of the capital. The affected areas are said protesters of the third term of President Nkurunziza namely Musaga, Mutakura, Cibitoke, Nyakabiga, Jabe, the last two being located in the center of Bujumbura.

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