Nkurunziza’s Unexpected Death Could Set Off Another Crisis in Burundi

Burundi’s president-elect, Evariste Ndayishimiye, left, is accompanied by President Pierre Nkurunziza after Ndayishimiye was chosen as the CNDD-FDD party’s presidential candidate, Gitega, Burundi, Jan. 25, 2020 (AP photo by Berthier Mugiraneza).
Burundi’s president-elect, Evariste Ndayishimiye, left, is accompanied by President Pierre Nkurunziza after Ndayishimiye was chosen as the CNDD-FDD party’s presidential candidate, Gitega, Burundi, Jan. 25, 2020 (AP photo by Berthier Mugiraneza).
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Editor’s Note: Every Friday, Andrew Green curates the top news and analysis from and about the African continent. Burundi’s outgoing president, Pierre Nkurunziza, who took power in 2005 promising to unify a country emerging from civil war, only to oversee an increasingly brutal crackdown against his regime’s opponents, died suddenly Monday at the age of 55. Officials said he suffered a heart attack, but there is speculation he may have died of complications from COVID-19 after he spent months downplaying the risk of the coronavirus. Nkurunziza’s death ahead of the August inauguration of his hand-picked successor has officials in Burundi […]

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