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Pierre Claver Mbonimpa urges Burundians not to give in to divisions

The prominent human rights activist, APRODH chairman, advises Burundians to shun divisions and revenge.

Pierre Claver Mbonimpa Chairman of APRODH urges Burundians to avoid revenge

Pierre Claver Mbonimpa Chairman of APRODH urges Burundians to avoid revenge

“Keep courage and say no to temptations to ethnic divisions, as well as to hate and all kinds of incendiary speeches regardless of where they come from”. That is a piece of advice to Burundian population in statement by Pierre Claver Mbonimpa, the exiled president of APRODH (Human Rights and Prisoners’ Protection Association). He also urged them to avoid revenge by appealing to their faith.

The statement was issued on 3 August, the date he survived an assassination attempt that left him critically wounded a year ago. The prominent human rights activist was shot as he went home from work. His face and neck were severely wounded. He was later evacuated to Belgium where he received treatment. He has lived there in exile ever since.

If Mbonimpa was lucky to survive the murder attempt, both his son and son in law were not. The unfortunate Mbonimpa heard of the news of their death while he was still convalescent. Welly Fleury Nzitonda, his youngest son, was found dead some hours after he was arrested by the police on Friday 6 November 2015. His son in law Pascal Nkeshimana had been killed on Friday 9 October of the same year.

The activist Mbonimpa had publicly opposed President Nkurunziza bid for a third term last year. He, like many other politicians and civil society activists, contended that the bid was unconstitutional and violated the Arusha peace agreement that put an end to more than a decade of civil war.There has been an increasing concern in both national and international communities that the ongoing crisis might lead to an ethnic violence.

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