Kangura No. 35

Republic of Burundi
Parti pour la Liberation du People Hutu du Burundi—Palipehutu
Information Department

Bujumbura, 10 April 1992

Press Release: Tutsis Massacre Hutu Civilians

On Thursday 9 April 1992, Burundi’s government radio simultaneously announced that the authors of the failed 4 March coup d’état had been arrested and that the same night, Palipehutu elements had attacked Mabayi and Buganda military barracks in the… [illegible text] …province…

Palipehutu attacks

Since Buyoya seized power in a military coup on 3 September 1987, his regime has been faced with increasing opposition from the Hutu majority, which has been oppressed, discriminated against and often been victims of cold-blooded massacres. On successive occasions, the regime massacred the Hutu population in 1988 in Ntega and Marangara, and in… [illegible text] …Gitega, Rutana, Kayanza and Muyinga. Since 9 April the army has been massacring people in Cibitoke province.

No foreign attack was launched from Rwanda as claimed by Burundian officials. The area of the unrest is located far from the border with Rwanda. Buganda commune is not located anywhere near the Rwanda border; it is 50 km away from Bujumbura town. Moreover, the refugee camps are located very far away from the border. On 9 April 1992, the governor of Cibitoke province, Mr. Antoine Baza, himself declared to his colleague in Cyangugu prefecture, André Kagimbangabo, that all was calm in his province. What is happening in Burundi is that the people are fed up with the Tutsi dictatorship and they do not believe in Buyoya’s fallacious policy, which avoids addressing the country’s real problems (ethnic, regional, mono-ethnic army, repeated massacres…) That is the reason why the population revolts constantly but, unfortunately, it always comes up against the murderous, undisciplined and mono-ethnic army. The people have now learnt to resist this violence.

Attempted coup d’état

In March 1992, some elements of the army tried to overthrow Major Pierre Buyoya. These were Buyoya’s fellow Tutsis. Those responsible for the coup were arrested on 9 April 1992. The major actors were Cyprien Mbonimpa, Buyoya’s Minister of External Relations until 1 April 1992, and Colonel Charles Kazattsa, Minister of the Interior under Bagaza. The attempted coup came after another that had taken place on… [date illegible] …March 1989 and which also ended in a failure. That is enough evidence that the Tutsis too have had enough of Buyoya and his outdated policies.

Conclusion

Burundi’s current political climate Burundi is unhealthy. Buyoya’s regime is facing opposition from all sides. The constitution he approved on 9 March 1992 is even not accepted…[missing text] is to fully democratize the country and to accept total multiparty politics without sidelining any political parties, like they are trying to do to Palipehutu.

Palipehutu has no connection whatsoever with former President Bagaza’s supporters, nor with the coup plotters, as was stated by Francois Ngeze, Burundi’s Minister of the Interior and Communal Development, during an interview on 9 April 1992.

We urge the international community to condemn the ongoing massacres of the Hutu population by the Tutsi army. We are also asking for an impartial inquiry into the matter. The only way to resolve the Burundi problem is to hold talks between the concerned parties and to implement total democratization of the country.

Néhemie Ciza
For the Information Department, Palipehutu