Human Right

European parliament demands release of four detained Burundian journalists

European parliamentarians adopted on 16 January a resolution condemning the continued deterioration of human rights situation in the lead-up to the upcoming elections.

Four detained Iwacu Press Group journalists

According to them, the victims of those abuses are mainly political opponents and people who are considered to be opponents. The European Parliament also called on Burundian authorities to drop the charges against four journalists working for Iwacu Press Group arrested in the west of Burundi on 22 October 2019 when exercising their fundamental rights.
They ask for their immediate and unconditional release.

Christine Kamikazi, Agnès Ndirubusa, Térence Mpozenzi and Egide Harerimana were arrested on 22 October 2019, when going to investigate the clashes that erupted between armed groups and security forces in Musigati. They are accused of undermining the state’s internal security.
The EU MPs also called on Burundian authorities to promote freedom of expression, access to information and free space in which human rights defenders can express themselves without intimidation or fear of retaliation in order to organize credible, peaceful and transparent elections in May 2020.

They also urged the Burundian authorities to lift measures that limit or hinder activities of civil society and media organizations. According to the European Parliament, civil society activists and journalists play an important role in the preparation of credible elections.

They, therefore, invite them to put an end to the intimidation, harassment and arbitrary arrest of journalists, human rights activists and members of the opposition.
“The Burundian authorities should allow human rights activists and journalists to carry out freely their legitimate mission of investigating and reporting human rights violations,” the resolution says.