Resistance for a State of Law in Burundi
(Résistance pour un Etat de Droit au Burundi, RED-Tabara)
Resistance for the Rule of Law in Burundi, Red-Tabara, has declared war against the Burundian military and government. Red Tabara is the MSD’s military wing. the group is led by an MSD member, a Hutu law student who served time in prison in 2010. This leader — Biremba Melchiade — wants to make space for a transitional government.
Over 200,000 refugees fled Burundi’s political crisis, which pits supporters of President Pierre Nkurunziza against those who said his re-election in July 2015 for a third term violated the constitution’s two-term limit as well as the Arusha agreement that ended Burundi’s 12-year civil war in 2005.
The Burundian armed opposition movement is fragmented, consisting of several groups with separate structures, most of whose leaders are in exile. It is not clear whether, or to what extent, they collaborate or coordinate their actions.
The situation worsened in November and December 2015, following the formation of the Forces républicaines du Burundi (Forebu) and Résistance pour un Etat de droit au Burundi (RED-Tabara) insurgencies, and an increase in targeted killings and violence.
Both groups claimed responsibility for some attacks. While RED-Tabara has claimed it only targets government forces, many other people have also been injured in attacks attributed to the group. Armed opposition groups are believed to be behind a number of grenade attacks in various areas of Bujumbura, though they rarely claim responsibility. Some of these attacks appeared indiscriminate, killing or injuring many passers-by. Others were more targeted.
In December 2015, a group of unidentified assailants attacked a series of military bases. Security forces retaliated by randomly shooting innocent bystanders in neighborhoods known for supporting the opposition.
On 25 January 2015 there were reports of armed clashes between Burundi security forces and armed civilians in the district of Mugamba in Bururi province in the south of Burundi, 60 km away from Bujumbura. Different media quoting the Mugamba district administrative authority said two of the armed men were killed by Burundian security forces and a variety of different kitchen utensils such as knives belonging to the armed men were seized. Résistance pour un Etat de Droit au Burundi (Resistance for a Rule of Law in Burundi), announced that it had killed five governmental soldiers and injured 20 others.
In an unusual move, both FOREBU and RED-Tabara claimed responsibility for two attacks in Cibitoke and Musaga neighborhoods on 06 February 2016. Not a single day passed without acts of violence not being recorded in Burundi’s capital city Bujumbura. As Burundi’s capital Bujumbura descended into new levels of lawlessness, armed opposition groups increased their attacks, killing dozens and injuring hundreds.
On February 1, 2016 the Burundian armed group opposed to President Pierre Nkurunziza on Monday called on all Burundians from within and the Diaspora, to join the "armed resistance" to protect the population "against the murderous barbarism of tyranny in Bujumbura ", following the postponement of the sending of a peacekeeping force for peace in Burundi.RED-Tabara, one of the armed groups recently created by opponents, has said in a statement "deeply disappointed" by the refusal of the African Union (AU) to deploy an African mission of prevention and protection in Burundi (Maprobu, which was to count 5000 men).
"For the AU to deploy this protection force must obtain prior approval of the despot Pierre Nkurunziza. An authorization that will never grant ", denounced the spokesman RED-Tabara, David Ihotorihirwa in the press release obtained by Belga. "The failure of the summit means that the armed resistance to the rule of law in Burundi becomes legitimate and obligation", it added.
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|