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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Rights watchdog accuses Burundi agents of killings, torture
Holly Manges Jones at 11:37 AM ET

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] Wednesday accused agents of the Burundi [JURIST news archive] National Intelligence Service of widespread abuses [press release] since the new government came into power, including killings and torture [JURIST report]. HRW contended in a new report [text] that President Pierre Nkurunziza [BBC profile] has given agents at all levels authority to carry out the government's agenda by any means necessary, citing almost 40 extra-judicial executions and over 200 arbitrary arrests during the last year. The National Council for the Defense of Democracy-Forces for the Defense of Democracy [Wikipedia backgrounder], Burundi's largest rebel group, was successful in the country's 2005 elections.

The rights watchdog has called for the abusers to "be brought to justice" and has condemned excuses offered by the intelligence service that such responses are necessary due to threats from other rebel groups. UPI has more.

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