Burundi army chief of staff, Maj. Gen. Prime Niyongabo, Friday morning escaped an assassination attempt.
Prime was ambushed by gunmen at Harabavye bridge near Muha international high school along Rumonge road in Kinindo town south of Bujumbura.
Burundi’s deputy police chief, General Godefroid Bizimana, told AFP news agency, two attackers were killed in the clash, and a third arrested while Gen Prime’s four bodyguards were also killed alongside a female police officer.
The army deployed swiftly to pursue the commandos who planned the attack.
According to Iwacu, there was a lot of gunfire and grenade explosions.
A police pickup truck that passed near the Kira Hospital, near the scene of the ambush, came under fire.
Soldiers have always been deployed on the same spot for a month now every time the Chief of General Staff passes heading to his work place.
The traffic in the area was blocked and according to SOS Media Burundi, a vehicle [pickup truck] suspected to have been used by assassins was found in Musaga.
Three senior military officers presented themselves at the Commune tied with two young men (who were lying in a Pick up the plate army A163A).
They reportedly claimed to be perpetrators of the attack against Prime Niyongabo but were let free.
The attack on Gen Prime comes after the assassination of Patrice Gahungu, spokesman of an opposition party, on Monday 6 September in Gasenyi commune, in the north of the capital.
The leader of the UDP, Zedi Feruzi, was murdered alongside his bodyguard on 23 May in Bujumbura.
A former Burundi army commander, Colonel Jean Bikomagu, was assassinated in the capital Bujumbura in August 2015.
A top Burundi opposition leader, Pontian Barutwanayo, was also assassinated in the same month.
Still in August, Come Harerimana a leading member of President Pierre Nkurunziza’s ruling CNDD-FDD party was assassinated.
The assassination of Burundi’s General Adolphe Nshimirimana, a former army Chief of Staff and head of Burundi’s Intelligence Service, opened a reign of terror in the smallest east African nation.