Critics warn that Burundi still harshly targets opposition
Opposition leaders and human rights groups are warning that Burundi’s government has shown little if any improvement under President Evariste Ndayishimiye, who took office after the death of President Pierre Nkurunziza in 2020 with talk of reforms after years of deadly political crackdowns.
Final goodbye: Recalling influential people who died in 2020
The world also said goodbye to U.S. Rep. John Lewis, a lion of the civil rights movement who died in July. Other former political figures who died this year include Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak, New York Mayor David Dinkins, Arizona Gov. Here is a roll call of some influential figures who died in 2020 (cause of death cited for younger people, if available):___JANUARY___David Stern, 77. The guitarist who supplied the scratching, seething sound that fueled the highly influential British punk band Gang of Four. He fused African rhythms with funk to become one of the most influential musicians in world dance music.
UN report 'extremely concerned' about Burundi's new leader
The abuses that followed drew international condemnation and led Burundi to leave the International Criminal Court and kick out the U.N. human rights office. The U.N. commission of inquiry said Burundi’s government has not responded to its correspondence. The new report found that Ndayishimiye appears to be taking the coronavirus pandemic more seriously than his predecessor, who declared that Burundi had divine protection. It called for the immediate release of human rights activists, political prisoners and journalists who were arbitrarily detained. The report says the pandemic has limited its investigative work into other alleged abuses in Burundi.
1st group of Burundian refugees returning home from Rwanda
Nearly 500 Burundian refugees living in Rwanda began their journey back to their home country Thursday, the first group to return from Rwanda after five years in exile following deadly political violence that sent many fleeing. (AP Photo/Berthier Mugiraneza)KIGALI Nearly 500 Burundian refugees living in Rwanda began their journey back to their home country Thursday, the first group to return after five years in exile following deadly political violence sent many fleeing. Some Burundian refugees told The Associated Press they are hopeful they can rebuild their lives now that a new president, Evariste Ndayishimiye, has taken power. The repatriation comes weeks after some refugees living in Mahama camp in eastern Rwanda petitioned Burundis new president to facilitate a return process. Their petition was given more weight early this month when Ndayishimiye accused Rwandas government of holding Burundian refugees hostage, adding that his government was not ready to work with Rwanda to normalize relations.
Burundi starts taking COVID-19 seriously, begins screening
A member of the public is tested for the coronavirus in Bujumbura, Burundi Monday, July 6, 2020. Burundi launched a campaign of mass screening for COVID-19 on Monday in the country's largest city Bujumbura, indicating that the new president Evariste Ndayishimiye is implementing policies to combat the spread of the disease. (AP Photo/Berthier Mugiraneza)NAIROBI Burundi launched a campaign of mass screening for COVID-19 on Monday in the country's largest city Bujumbura, indicating that the new president is changing policies to combat the spread of the disease. Launching the screening scheme, Health Minister Thaddee Ndikumana said the government is determined to fight the spread of COVID-19. The screening program launched Monday indicates that Ndayishimiye is indeed taking the threat of the disease more seriously.
Burundi court says to swear in president-elect immediately
Burundi's government said Tuesday, June 9, 2020 that President Pierre Nkurunziza has died of a heart attack. (AP Photo/Berthier Mugiraneza, File)NAIROBI Burundis constitutional court on Friday said the president-elect should be sworn in as soon as possible, ending uncertainty created by the death of President Pierre Nkurunziza this week. Ndayishimiye was the ruling party candidate in the election, defeating opposition leader Agathon Rwasa, who challenged the vote in court while alleging irregularities but lost. Legally speaking, all Burundians know its the speaker, Pascal Nyabenda, who is supposed to take over as interim president. What the ruling party is doing is simply a coup, Magera said.