Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

top
Capital News
Tanzanian Security Forces arrest two people in Stone Town, Zanzibar

Africa

Tanzanian security services tortured Burundi refugees: HRW

Nairobi, Kenya, Dec 1 – Security forces in Tanzania have arbitrarily detained, tortured and forcibly disappeared at least 18 Burundian refugees since late last year, Human Rights Watch said in a new report.

Police officers this year snatched seven refugees and asylum seekers living in camps in the western Kigoma region, near the border with Burundi, the New York-based watchdog said Monday.

The whereabouts and fate of the detainees are unknown and “additional Burundians may have suffered similar abuse,” the report said.

“Between October 2019 and August 2020, Tanzanian police and intelligence services forcibly disappeared, tortured, and arbitrarily detained at least 11 Burundians for up to several weeks in abysmal conditions in a police station in Kibondo, Kigoma region.” 

Three of the captives were freed inside Tanzania, while in August the authorities forcibly repatriated the eight others to Burundi, where they were detained without charge, HRW said.

The “enforced disappearances of Burundian refugees and asylum seekers in Tanzania are heinous crimes, not least because of the anguish and suffering caused to family members, many of whom fled similar abuses in Burundi,” said Mausi Segun, Africa director at HRW.

In testimony gathered by the NGO, nine of the detainees at Kibondo were reportedly tortured before they were returned to the Mtendeli and Nduta camps in Kigoma.

“The Burundians said that Tanzanian police detained them in rooms with no electricity or windows, took them to a separate building on the police station grounds, and hanged them from the ceiling by their handcuffs,” the report said.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

“Some said that police and intelligence agents gave them electric shocks, rubbed their faces and genitals with chili, and beat and whipped them.”

In certain cases, police and intelligence officers told refugees that they had been given information about them by Burundian authorities, “suggesting collusion between agents from the two countries,” the report said.

In 2015 more than 400,000 people fled their homes in Burundi for neighbouring countries during a violent crisis caused by then president Pierre Nkurunziza’s decision to run for a contested third term.

Dozens of people died in a brutal crackdown on protest, but the Constitutional Court ruled that the third term was legal. Nkurunziza won an election boycotted by the opposition and remained in power until his death in June this year.

At the end of October, Tanzania was still host to more than 150,000 refugees in three camps, but almost 100,000 people have returned to Burundi since September 2017.

Click to comment
Advertisement

More on Capital News

Capital Health

As of Jan 21, the country had a cumulative caseload of 99,444 while the death toll stood at 1,736

County News

Suppliers in counties have gone for months without pay, some since early last year.

US Elections (2020)

Beijing, China, Jan 21 – China on Thursday congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration and called for a reset in relations between Beijing...

US Elections (2020)

Biden has repeatedly spoken of the need to rebuild the United States' global standing and declared in his inauguration speech: "We will repair our...

BBI

The list can be accessed on the commission's website where those listed as having endorsed the initiative are required to confirm their details and...

Capital Health

Biden was sworn in as the 46th US president on Wednesday, delivering a calming call to heal a nation riven by festering divisions that...

World

Washington, United States, Jan 21 – New US President Joe Biden warned the worst of the pandemic is still to come, as the number...

Capital Health

Washington, United States, Jan 21 – US President Joe Biden was expected Thursday to unveil his administration’s plans to tackle the coronavirus crisis, as he...