I.V. was a young man from Burundi invested in politics, an active supporter of an opposition party. After he openly showed his support for the party in question during an electoral campaign, I.V. began receiving anonymous phone calls with explicit death threats such as “You have very little time left to live”. Terrified, the victim abandoned his studies and distanced himself from his friends. He hid at home like a recluse for weeks, fearing for his life.
In 2012, however, he left his house to meet a friend. It quickly became clear this was a trap – people close to him saw him being taken away by police in uniform. A few days later, his lifeless body was found in the neighbouring countryside.
The local Prosecutor immediately ordered the competent authorities to launch an investigation, a request that was vehemently supported by several NGOs. Despite this, years after the events, no investigation has been carried out and I.V.’s family has yet to discover the truth about his summary execution.
In 2015, in the light of this blatant impunity, TRIAL seized the file and took it to a human rights protection organisation. In its complaint, it alleged that the murder of Mr I.V. is, among others, a violation of his right to live, to non-discrimination, to freedom and to freedom of speech.