Five killed in gun attack in opposition district of Burundi capital

Five people were killed in a gun and grenade attack in a district of Burundi’s capital which is stronghold of opposition to President Pierre Nkurunziza, police said.

Tit-for-tat attacks between Nkurunziza’s security forces and his opponents have escalated since April 2015 when he announced a disputed bid for a third term. He won re-election in July.

Thursday night’s attack struck a bar in Bujumbura’s Musaga neighbourhood, where protests were held against the president last year, said deputy police spokesman Moise Nkurunziza.

Among the dead were a three-year old child and an unarmed soldier who was in civilian clothes, he said.

“It was around 10.10 pm last night when four armed men in civilian clothes attacked a small pub… killing five people,” he said. “As they were fleeing, the attackers threw a grenade at a small army base just nearby which didn’t do any damage.”

Residents in Musaga said two others who were wounded in the attack later died. Officials were not immediately reachable to confirm the deaths.

The United Nations says more than 400 people have been killed since last April and close to 260,000 have fled the country.