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Burundian media in exile in Rwanda silenced

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                The Burundian media in exile in Rwanda silenced for two days by decision of the Rwandan authorities.  Some journalists in exile in this country say they have been sacrificed at the altar of political realism, since the two neighboring countries embarked on the path of normalizing their relations, it was a little over six months ago.

                                    <p>RPA African public radio, Télé Renaissance and radio Inzamba, accused by Gitega of "<em> destabilization </em>From Burundi, broadcast their programs from Kigali in Rwanda where they found refuge at the height of the Burundian crisis after their destruction by the power of Gitega, for almost six years.

Burundian media officials in exile in Rwanda knew they were on borrowed time. Already in October 2020, just after the start of the launch of the normalization process between Gitega and Kigali. The Rwandan authorities had given them a month to pack up, but they had continued to broadcast without any problem.

Everything accelerated two days ago, when they were ordered to close immediately. It is a shock for the journalists of the three media who were preparing the evening papers and who are obliged to stop everything on the spot, a shock also for their many Burundian listeners.

A political gesture on the part of Rwanda

Why this accelerator? From the outset, Kigali notably demanded an end to the attacks by Rwandan rebels from Burundi, while Gitega demanded the extradition of ten Burundian exiles that he describes as putschists from 2015 and that radio stations broadcasting from Rwanda be silenced.

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After several meetings with the military intelligence officials of the two countries, Burundi has initiated concrete military actions against the Rwandan rebels, some of whom have allegedly been delivered to Rwanda, according to corroborating sources. Kigali therefore had to make a gesture in turn, hence the closure of the three radio stations, according to our sources.

On Thursday, the head of Burundian presidential communication congratulated himself on “ an important step Of Rwanda in the right direction.

►Also read: In Burundi, the government reaches out to the media under sanctions

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