Head of the Association for the Protection of Human Rights and Detained Persons (APRODH), Mbonimpa publicly opposed Nkurunziza and spoke of allegations of vote-rigging during the country's controversial elections.

At the time, the assassination attempt caused an outcry among human rights organisations and the United Nations, who condemned the attack as a "disturbing escalation" of violence, which has occurred since the attempted coup and disorder surrounding the anti-government protests.

The killing of Nshirimana comes as the Burundian ruling power accused the EU of ethnic bias after it imposed sanctions against four Burundians for "undermining democracy" and blocking efforts to resolve the political crisis.

"The EU's decision to take judicial sanctions against some Burundians is illegal and a provocation," the CNDD-FDD said in a statement on 5 October. "Sanctions were taken against four Burundian Hutus." The president's party said it was "deeply shocked to hear about its sanctions that only too well remind [us of] the sad story that Burundi experienced, punctuated by bloody events for over 40 years".

By Gianluca Mezzofiore
International Business Times