BURUNDI: General Seeks to Oust President

BUJUMBURA JULY 10, 2015 (CISA) – General Leonard Ngendakumana who was part of a failed coup attempt in May has said his group was still working to oust President Pierre Nkurunziza.

“At that time (in May), we just failed to remove Nkurunziza from power. The aim is still there,” General Leonard Ngendakumana told Reuters July 9.

Ngendakumana said the president and his allies were creating ethnic tensions and were arming the ruling CNDD-FDD’s youth-wing Imbonerakure, widely seen as a Hutu force.

“This situation can lead to genocide,” he said.

Ngendakumana further called on the international community to increase the pressure on the government by delivering on threats to impose sanctions saying, “If political pressure has failed, the international community should jump to another stage.”

“The only way to reach this objective is to use force,” he said, adding that he was working with coup leader General Godefroid Niyombare in, “organizing ourselves in military units” to help protect people from police or Imbonerakure.

Ngendakumana’s sentiments came as the ruling party in Burundi won the parliamentary election that was boycotted by the main opposition parties.

The presidential election is scheduled for July 15.

Burundi which is still trying to recover from a 12-year civil war that ended in 2005 was plunged into political crisis following President Nkurunziza’s decision to seek a third five-year term.

Opponents say the president’s re-election bid violates the constitution and a peace deal that ended the civil war, but the president says he is entitled to a third term because he was appointed for his first term, not elected.

According to the United Nations, at least 70 people have died and 150,000 people have fled Burundi.

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