Burundi Horror Amid The Green Hills

A bloody bout of tribal warfare

Initial reports from the remote northern reaches of Burundi had a nightmarish quality. Mass panic. Thousands killed. Peasants wielding machetes and spears against soldiers armed with high-tech weapons. Waves of fleeing refugees. Widespread accounts of wanton revenge and murder.

As rumor gave way to fact, it became clear that the former Belgian colony had suffered a terrible horror. Last week the Burundian government confirmed that ten days of tribal massacres in the verdant, mountainous communities of Marangara and Ntega had left as many as 5,000 people dead and tens of thousands homeless. Western observers estimate that some 38,000 refugees have fled...

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