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Last Updated: Friday, 1 April, 2005, 12:38 GMT 13:38 UK
Refugee killed in Burundi riot
South African peacekeepers in Burundi
More than 5,000 UN peacekeepers are in Burundi
A South African UN peacekeeper has killed a refugee in Burundi after opening fire during a food riot.

The scuffle started when a United Nations official was kidnapped by some Congolese refugees unhappy with the food being distributed to them.

The BBC's Gaspard Karwerwa says an intervening peacekeeper shot dead a university student and wounded another refugee and a gendarme.

The Tutsi refugees are survivors of last August's Gatumba camp massacre.

'Excessive force'

They had fled ethnic fighting in Democratic Republic of Congo and were living in camps along the border, when attackers crossed from DR Congo killing more than 160 Tutsi refugees.

They were relocated by the UN from the border area to Gihinga camp in central Mwaro district for their safety.

Prosper Bazombanza, the governor of Mwaro said "there was a use of excessive force" by the peacekeepers at Gihinga camp, AFP reports.

Burundi itself has been plagued by tension between the dominant Tutsi minority and the Hutu majority and more than 5,000 UN peacekeepers are in the country to support its peace process.

It is also battling with a drought and the UN's World Food Programme has stepped up distribution of food aid to people in the north-east - the worst affected area.




SEE ALSO:
Burundi approves new famine tax
13 Jan 05 |  Africa
Q&A: Burundi massacre
16 Aug 04 |  Africa
In pictures: Burundi massacre
14 Aug 04 |  In Pictures
Country profile: Burundi
26 Feb 04 |  Country profiles


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