On The Line: Danny Gold Discusses Burundi’s Controversial Presidential Elections

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VICE News correspondent Danny Gold (https://twitter.com/DGisserious) joined On The Line to discuss the Burundi’s controversial presidential election.

In April, Burundi’s incumbent president, Pierre Nkurunziza, announced plans to run for a third term in office — a move many claimed was unconstitutional. The political maneuver sparked violent clashes between Nkurunziza’s supporters and those opposed to his third term, triggering a wave of government-sponsored repression and intimidation. Danny Gold traveled to Burundi for VICE News where he spoke to citizens on both sides of the political divide for “Burundi on the Brink.”

Watch “Burundi on the Brink” – http://bit.ly/1I90qLn

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This Week On The Line: Danny Gold Discusses Burundi’s Controversial Presidential Elections

On Thursday at 12pm EDT VICE News correspondent Danny Gold (https://twitter.com/DGisserious) joins On The Line to discuss the Burundi’s controversial presidential election.

In April, Burundi’s incumbent president, Pierre Nkurunziza, announced plans to run for a third term in office — a move many claimed was unconstitutional. The political maneuver sparked violent clashes between Nkurunziza’s supporters and those opposed to his third term, triggering a wave of government-sponsored repression and intimidation. Danny Gold traveled to Burundi for VICE News where he spoke to citizens on both sides of the political divide for “Burundi on the Brink.”

Watch “Burundi on the Brink” – http://bit.ly/1I90qLn

VICE News and On The Line want to hear from you! Let us know your questions for Danny on Twitter with the hashtag #ontheline, or send us a video message on Skype.

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Nighttime Violence in Bujumbura: Burundi On The Brink (Dispatch 5)

In the past several weeks, gunfire and explosions have pierced the night in Bujumbura, Burundi’s capital. The identity of the shooters has remained a mystery, although many suspect the police, in conjunction with the Imbonerakure, the youth wing of the ruling party. Considered by some to be an armed militia, the Imbonerakure have been accused of helping police quell dissidents. In neighborhoods where residents are opposed to Burundi’s ruling party and therefore subject to the night raids, people have organized to protect themselves — destroying entrances to neighborhoods, creating a communication system that notifies residents when an intruder has entered the community.

VICE News visits an opposition neighborhood in Bujumbura during the night to see what defense measures have been put in place, and witnesses the aftermath of the violence.

Watch “The Spoils of War: Burundi on the Brink (Dispatch 4)” – http://bit.ly/1fQRWhI

Watch previous dispatches from Burundi – http://bit.ly/1I90qLn

‘If They See Me Alive, They’ll Kill Me’: Burundi Refugees Filling Up Camps Across the Border – http://bit.ly/1HB7yfL

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Forced Out of the Forest: The Lost Tribe of Uganda

Removed from their forest dwellings by government authorities in order to establish the Mgahinga and Bwindi Impenetrable National Parks in Uganda, the Batwa pygmies now live in slums around Kisoro, a town which sees tourists stream through each year to visit the parks, which were created to protect the country’s endangered mountain gorillas.

While conservation tourism booms, however, most Batwa are considered ultra poor, have extremely low life expectancy, and have been struggling to have their rights recognized for three decades.

Over recent years, a Batwa organization called UOBDU has sought legal recourse, arguing that the land for the national parks was unlawfully seized from the indigenous people. This is yet to be resolved.

VICE News films with the Batwa pygmies, where they struggle against discrimination and poverty to survive in Uganda.

Watch “Fleeing to Rwanda: Burundi On The Brink (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1HRDpOQ

Read “In One Uganda Slum, Gambling Is a Prudent Financial Investment” – http://bit.ly/1Md7Q31

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The Lost Tribe of Uganda (Trailer)

Watch the full length: http://bit.ly/1Jci9CD

Expelled from their ancestral homes by the creation of the Mgahinga and Bwindi Impenetrable National Parks in southwestern Uganda, the Batwa pygmies have been reduced to a small community of around 1,000 individuals living in slums around Kisoro, a town where tourists stream each year to visit the parks and see its famed mountain gorillas.

While conservation tourism booms, however, most Batwa are considered ultra poor, have extremely low life expectancy, and have been struggling to have their rights recognized for three decades.

Over recent years, a Batwa organization called UOBDU has sought legal recourse, arguing that the land for the national parks was unlawfully seized from the indigenous people. This is yet to be resolved.

VICE News learns how Batwa pygmies, having being forced from the forest, struggle against discrimination and poverty to survive in Uganda.

Watch “Fleeing to Rwanda: Burundi On The Brink (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1HRDpOQ

Read “Uganda’s LGBT Community Is Fighting Back — With Information”- http://bit.ly/1NTGXhO

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Firebombed Media: Burundi on the Brink (Dispatch 3)

Burundi once enjoyed a vibrant media scene, with many independent journalists and radio stations operating freely. Yet when President Pierre Nkurunziza announced his bid for a highly contested third term in office in April, it sparked mass protests. Since then, authorities and pro-government bodies have intimidated and arrested journalists.

The attempted coup d’etat in capital Bujumbura on May 13 was the tipping point for free media in Burundi. The offices of independent radio stations were firebombed for reporting information about the coup and fierce fighting broke out over control of the state media headquarters. Most of the offices remain shuttered to this day, and access to information has been suppressed in the weeks since, as rumors of a civil war run rampant throughout the city.

VICE News goes on a tour of media offices that have been firebombed, and visits the last standing independent newspaper in Bujumbura.

Watch “Inside a Bujumbura Opposition Stronghold: Burundi on the Brink (Dispatch 2)” – http://bit.ly/1K47okc

Read “‘If They See Me Alive, They’ll Kill Me’: Burundi Refugees Filling Up Camps Across the Border” – http://bit.ly/1K1Me9i

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Inside a Bujumbura Opposition Stronghold: Burundi on the Brink (Dispatch 2)

The Buterere neighborhood of Burundi’s capital city Bujumbura is a stronghold of support for the National Forces of Liberation, one of the main opposition parties currently campaigning against President Pierre Nkurunziza.

Buterere is also the site of many demonstrations and clashes between protesters and police since Nkurunziza announced his candidacy for a highly contested third term in April.

On the morning of Thursday July 9, VICE News arrived at the entrance of Buterere to find sporadic but consistent gunfire and a roadblock built by protesters. After the gunfire settled, police officers forced the demonstrators to tear down the barricade.

Once clear of the police, VICE News entered Buterere to hear testimony from residents about what it’s like inside one of Bujumbura’s opposition strongholds.

Watch “Fleeing to Rwanda: Burundi On The Brink (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1HRDpOQ

Read “Meet the Poet Who Fled for Her Life After Protesting Against Burundi’s President” – http://bit.ly/1Cr5Ctr

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Fleeing to Rwanda: Burundi On The Brink (Dispatch 1)

Over 150,000 people have fled the small Eastern African nation of Burundi since political strife, intimidation, and unrest have plagued the country in recent months. Many of those migrants have sought refuge in neighboring Rwanda. Nearly 30,000 civilians are now living in Mahama refugee camp, one of the largest UNHCR camps built since the crisis began in April 2015.

A large number of activists, journalists, politicians, and opposition leaders have also fled Burundi for their own personal safety, settling in Rwanda’s capital, Kigali.

VICE News stops through Rwanda en route to Burundi and speaks with young men at Mahama camp and an activist in Kigali about what life is like amid the current political crisis.

Read “Meet the Poet Who Fled for Her Life After Protesting Against Burundi’s President” – http://bit.ly/1Cr5Ctr

Watch “Chad’s Fight Against Boko Haram” – http://bit.ly/1KQSP6y

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Thai Military Declares Coup d’État: Thailand on the Brink (Dispatch 3)

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Thailand’s military detained former prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Friday in the latest development of the country’s unraveling political crisis.

The army, which is consolidating its grip on Thailand following Thursday’s coup d’état, barred 155 prominent citizens from leaving the country.

More from VICE News:

“Thailand’s Anti-Democratic Royalists Precipitate Political Chaos” –
https://news.vice.com/article/thailands-anti-democratic-royalists-precipitate-political-chaos

“Thai Court Ousts Prime Minister Over Abuse of Power” –
https://news.vice.com/article/thai-court-ousts-prime-minister-over-abuse-of-power

Watch all of VICE News’ coverage in Thailand: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLw613M86o5o4-RjsEafwq6J8R-QUs9n-X

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Thai Protesters Occupy Government House: Thailand on the Brink (Dispatch 2)

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Thailand’s political crisis deepens, as the anti-government PDRC takes advantage of the political chaos following the ousting of Thailand’s former caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and nine of her ministers last Wednesday.

The PDRC protesters were quick to announce that they’ll keep fighting until Yingluck’s entire cabinet steps down, despite the fact that the vast majority of Thais voted for the government they are trying to oust. The PDRC is short for the People’s Democratic Reform Committee and has always, as the name implies, wanted to install a non-elected people’s committee to take over the power in Thailand, in order to rid the country of what they refer to as the influence of the corrupt former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra – Yingluck’s brother.

VICE News follows the PDRC protesters as they relocate their HQ to the official Government House, which shows just how much support they have within the political halls of power. This has enraged the tens of thousands of pro-government red shirts camped in the outskirts of Bangkok. The local press warns of an impending Thai-tanic.

More from VICE News:

“Thailand’s Anti-Democratic Royalists Precipitate Political Chaos” –
https://news.vice.com/article/thailands-anti-democratic-royalists-precipitate-political-chaos

“Thai Court Ousts Prime Minister Over Abuse of Power” –
https://news.vice.com/article/thai-court-ousts-prime-minister-over-abuse-of-power

Watch all of VICE News’ coverage in Thailand: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLw613M86o5o4-RjsEafwq6J8R-QUs9n-X

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