Twenty people have been killed in a rebel assault in the western region of Burundi.

An assault in Vugizo, resulting in the deaths of 12 children, three women, and five men, has been claimed by the Red-Tabara group. The Burundian government reports that the attack, carried out by rebels, claimed the lives of 20 individuals, with only one being a non-civilian. The Red-Tabara rebel group has acknowledged responsibility for the attack and stated that they killed 10 members of the security forces. The incident occurred on Friday evening in Vugizo, a town near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the rebels have a base.

According to the government, this act of terror targeted civilians, resulting in the deaths of 12 children, including five under the age of five, three pregnant women, and five men, including a policeman who had come to aid the civilians. Two military and security sources have confirmed that the attack was directed at a military position. The civilians were unfortunate casualties caught in the crossfire, while the assailants retreated into the Democratic Republic of Congo. The toll of 20 deaths has been officially verified by a senior military official who requested anonymity.

This attack marks the second in two weeks within Burundi by the Red-Tabara rebels. Although they had been inactive since September 2021, when they carried out several strikes, including an attack on Bujumbura airport, their activities have recently resumed in the South Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of Congo. With an estimated 500 to 800 fighters, the Red-Tabara group has been responsible for the majority of deadly attacks in Burundi since 2015.

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