06:23 GMT +322 July 2018
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    Protesters gesture near female police officer accused of shooting a protestor in Buterere neighbourhood of Bujumbura, Burundi

    Burundi Police Fire Live Ammo at Hundreds of Anti-President Protesters

    © REUTERS / Goran Tomasevic
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    Police opened fire at hundreds of protesters in the capital of the Southeast African nation of Burundi, according to Wednesday's media reports.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Authorities dispersed a crowd using live ammunition and tear gas in central Bujumbura, the BBC reported, citing local witnesses.

    Violence in the landlocked country erupted on April 26, when President Pierre Nkurunziza announced he will seek a third consecutive term in the June 26 elections.

    Some 20 Burundians have been killed to date protesting against Nkurunziza's decision, upheld by the country's constitutional court behind arguments that he was appointed by parliament and not elected directly to serve his first term.

    Having assumed office in 2005 after a 12-year civil war that claimed some 300,000 lives, Nkurunziza ran unopposed in 2010 after the withdrawal of other candidates and alleged fraud.

    The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, meanwhile, reported that over 50,000 people have fled to neighboring Rwanda, Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo as of last week.

    The latest violence takes place against the backdrop of crisis resolution talks in Dar es Salam, Tanzania, among heads of five neighboring states, as well as South African, African Union and US envoys.

    Related:

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    One Dead, Three Injured in Fresh Burundi Clashes
    Tags:
    live ammo, tear gas, police, protests, Pierre Nkurunziza, Bujumbura, Burundi
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