Imbonerakure (Burundi)

Country: Burundi
Details of Formation: It is unclear whether the government created the militia. In 2009, the leader of the ruling party confirmed the existence of Imbonerakure.
Details of Termination: As of 2015, the militia still exists.
Purpose: Allegedly, the militia is trained to support the army and police in ensuring the safety of citizens and the security of the ruling party’s office. In response to attacks on meeting places of the ruling party, Imbonerakure started marches through the street, shouting death threats aimed at intimidating the political opposition. Many clashes erupted since the formation of the militia between Imbonerakure and militants from opposition parties. They intimidate and attack citizens believed to be affiliated with the opposition.
Organisation: The militia operates under the leadership of the ruling party CNDD-FDD.
Weapons and Training: Imbonerakure are said to be trained in the province of Muyinga. Further training centres allegedly exist in the DRC. The militia is armed with sticks, clubs, stones, hoes, machetes and rifles. The national police and intelligence services provide them with weapons, vehicles and uniforms.
Size: The militia is believed to consist of around 100,000 members.
Reason for Membership: Many members of the militia stem from the youth wing of the ruling party CNDD-FDD rendering their political affiliation as a source of motivation to join the group.
Treatment of Civilians: The militia attacked journalists reporting about clashes between them and members of the opposition party (FNL). They furthermore beat civilians suspected to be affiliated with the FNL. In some instances the police intervened in these attacks. Otherwise they enjoy impunity while beating up opponents or engaging in deadly vendettas. Interior Minister Edouard Nduwimana asserted that mistakes are the fault of individuals and should not be held against the movement as a whole.
Other Information: --
References: Information was taken from news sources listed in the PGMD