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UN: Climate of fear pervades Burundi ahead of 2020 elections

September 4, 2019

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — A U.N. report says the turmoil from the 2015 crisis caused by Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza’s term extension hasn’t been resolved, and the climate of fear and intimidation continues for those not supporting the ruling party ahead of next year’s elections.

The Chair of the U.N. Commission of Inquiry into Burundi said in a report released Wednesday it is extremely dangerous to speak out critically in Burundi today. The stifling of voices allows the country to present an illusion of calm, added commissioner Lucy Asuagbor.

The U.N. findings are similar to those of a July Associated Press report. Although Nkurunziza has said he won’t run in next year’s election, many there say they don’t believe him. A national referendum last year approved changing the constitution to extend presidential term limits.

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