US tells citizens to vacate Burundi

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The Unites States (US) has warned its citizens not to travel to war-torn Burundi as violence in the country continues to escalate.

The State Department warning comes after an upsurge of violence in the capital Bujumbura on Friday, that left nearly 90 people dead.

“As a result of continuing violence, the Department of State ordered the departure of dependents of US government personnel and non-emergency US government personnel from Burundi on December 13,” the warning said.

Violence in the East African country began in April after President Pierre Nkurunziza launched his bid for a third term in office.

According to the UN, at least 240 people have been killed and more than 200,000 have fled to neighbouring countries since April, raising fears of a civil war.

Last month, Belgium advised its citizens to leave Burundi, and the European Union (EU) cut staff levels, temporarily evacuating employees’ “families and part of the non-essential staff”.

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