According to Aljazeera report, about 10 senior officers from Burundi’s army and police force have left the country since the beginning of this month because of ongoing repression in the country.
Burundian security expert Gratien Rukindikiza explained their reasons for leaving, saying that the total number of deserters are13 and said they had fled owing to fears of repression because of their ethnicity or for being perceived as supporters of the country’s political opposition.
Human rights activists say the Hutu-dominated government of President Pierre Nkurunziza is increasingly repressing ethnic Tutsis.
Burundi has been in turmoil since Nkurunziza announced last year that he would seek a third term in office despite a constitutional two-term limit. His election victory in July 2015 unleashed a wave of political violence in which hundreds have been killed.
The security expert, said.
“In May, a court handed life sentences to 21 people, including senior military officers, who had been implicated in a failed coup attempt against Nkurunziza. Dozens of soldiers have been arrested on charges of supporting the opposition, Rukindikiza, Many of the detainees belong to the minority Tutsi ethnic group”.
Among those that flee is Colonel Adolphe Manirakiza, a former spokesman for the UN peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic, who fled Burundi in April.