Burundi Says Neighboring Rwanda Expelled 1,500 of Its Citizens

Burundi said Rwanda expelled at least 1,528 of its citizens who refused to relocate to refugee camps, in the latest flaring of tensions between the East African neighbors.

A total of 1,310 Burundian citizens have been received in Kirundo province and 218 in Ngozi province since May 13, Interior Ministry Permanent Secretary Terence Ntahiraja told reporters Monday in the capital, Bujumbura. Rwandan Foreign Affairs Minister Louise Mushikiwabo didn’t answer three phone calls and a text message seeking comment.

Burundi has accused neighboring Rwanda of backing rebels seeking to oust President Pierre Nkurunziza, whose decision in April 2015 to stand for a disputed third term triggered violence that has killed more than 470 people. Rwanda dismisses those accusations. Landlocked Burundi and Rwanda are members of the East African Community, a six-nation bloc with a combined gross domestic product of at least $147.5 billion.

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