Battle for power continues after attempted coup in Burundi

Access to the comments Comments
By Euronews  with Reuters, AFP
Battle for power continues after attempted coup in Burundi

Sporadic gunfire rings out in the Burundi capital as rival forces fight for control of Bujumbura after an attempted coup.

President Nkurunziza condemned the plot to overthrow him and said he was ready to forgive any solider wishing to surrender, the words came in a broadcast from state radio RTNB before it went off air after gun shots could be heard from the area.

The radio aired a statement saying it was under government control announcing the end of fighting at the station. Control of the broadcaster is seen as key as it is the only radio transmitting outside the capital.

A journalist from AFP newsagency has reported the deaths of at least three soliders during the clashes around the RTNB. The first casualties to be reported since the coup attempt. The bodies were seen about one kilometre away from the radio but the journalist could not confirm which camp they belonged to.

The location of the president remains a mystery though he managed to send a message on Twitter calling on citizens to remain calm. Many responded on Twitter asking Where is Nkurunziza?

The president was in Tanzania for a meeting of African leaders on Wednesday when General Niyombare announced a coup. It came after weeks of protests and clashes over the president’s plans to run for a third five-year term in office.

The African Union has called for dialogue in Burundi to resolve the political crisis.