Rwanda: Burundian refugees mourn compatriots killed in eastern DR Congo

Kigali, Rwanda (PANA) - The association of Burundian refugees in Rwanda on Friday said it was grieved by the death of 34 of their compatriots who were killed early this week in Kamanyola, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The victims, all civilians, were shot by Congolese soldiers after some Burundian refugees went to the bureau of intelligence in Kamanyola to inquire about four detained refugees.

In a statement issued in Kigali, the representative of Burundian refugees in urban settlements across Rwanda, Willy Nkurunziza, called upon the Congolese government to respect the refugee convention stipulating that refugees should not be penalized for entering another country to seek asylum.

Following the incident, which stirred violence in the refugee camps in eastern DRC, authorities in Kinshasa are reportedly forcing Burundian refugees to repatriate.

"We are urging Congolese authorities to stop this deportation [of Burundian refugees] and respect international conventions. These are days of tears," said Nkurunziza.

Latest reports by the UN refugee agency indicate that 44,000 refugees from Burundi are currently sheltering in DRC.

The prolonged political crisis in Burundi has worsened the humanitarian situation in the country and prompted more and more Burundian people to flee to neighbouring countries for safety and security.

-0- PANA TWA/AR 22Sept2017

22 septembre 2017 17:47:19




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