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Introduction: Burundi's first democratically elected president was assassinated in October 1993 after only 100 days in office, triggering widespread ethnic violence between Hutu and Tutsi factions. More than 200,000 Burundians perished during the conflict that spanned almost a dozen years. Hundreds of thousands of Burundians were internally displaced or became refugees in neighboring countries. An internationally brokered power-sharing agreement between the Tutsi-dominated government and the Hutu rebels in 2003 paved the way for a transition process that led to an integrated defense force, established a new constitution in 2005, and elected a majority...

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History: In the 16th century, Burundi was a kingdom characterized by a hierarchical political authority and tributary economic exchange. A king (mwani) headed a princely aristocracy (ganwa) that owned most of the land and required a tribute, or tax, from local farmers and herders. In the mid-18th century, this predominantly-Tutsi royalty consolidated authority over land, production, and distribution with ...

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International Relations: Burundi enjoys generally good relations with neighbouring states. Regional states, including Uganda, South Africa and Tanzania maintain a role in the post-conflict process. Burundi continues to strengthen its regional position with its admission to the East African Community, comprising Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania and is also a participant in the Great Lakes Conference process. Small numbers of Burundian troops were engaged in the DRC at the start of the 1998 - 2003 war in pursuit of Burundian rebels, but it was not involved in the wider regional conflict and relations between Burundi and the DRC have since been normalised. As of ...

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