Burundi Ban BBC, VOA broadcasts

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Burundi’s government says British Broadcasting Corporation, BBC, and Voice of America, VOA, broadcasts will be banned from 7 May for six months for falling short of laws governing the press and breach of professional ethics.

Burundi is gearing up for a referendum vote on 17 May, which could extend the rule of President Pierre Nkurunziza and allow him to rule until 2034.

The United States State Department recently said the vote could hurt Burundi’s democratic institutions.

Human Rights Watch says government forces and members of the ruling party have killed, beaten and intimidated people they regard as opponents of the poll.

Nearly 430,000 people, including opposition politicians, have fled Burundi since President Nkurunziza won a controversial third term in 2015.

Habeeb Adedapo

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