Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
In September of 1987, Buyoya led a military coup against the Second Republic of Burundi, led by Jean-Baptiste Bagaza, and installed himself as the first president of the Third Republic. He proclaimed an agenda of liberalization and patching relations between Hutu and Tutsi ethnic groups, but presided over an oppressive ruling junta consisting primarily of Tutsi. This led to a Hutu uprising in August of 1988, which caused approximately 20,000 deaths. After these killings, Buyoya appointed a commission to find a way to mediate the violence.
This commission created a new constitution, which Buyoya approved in 1992. This constitution called for a nonethnic government with a president and a parliament. Democratic elections were held in June 1993 and were won by the Hutu Melchior Ndadaye who created a balanced Hutu and Tutsi government. Nevertheless, the army assassinated Ndadaye and Burundi returned to civil war. Nearly 150,000 people were killed as the war raged. There were numerous attempts at government, but even the coalition government under Sylvestre Ntibantunganya was unable to stop the fighting.
On July 25, 1996 Buyoya returned to power in a coup, ousting Ntibantunganya. The civil war became less intense but continued. Economic sanctions were also imposed by the international community because of the nature of Buyoya's return to power, but were eased as Buyoya created an ethnically inclusive government. Buyoya selected as his vice-president Domitien Ndayizeye, a Hutu. The conditions of the governmental agreement required Buyoya to hand over power in 2003, which he did. Ndayizeye became the president of Burundi on April 30.
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