Laura Gordon

Laura Gordon (Survivor Corps in Burundi): Laura worked as an English teacher in Côte d’Ivoire in 2002 and Thailand in 2003. In 2006 she graduated from the University of Oxford with a 1st Class degree in Modern History. After graduating, Laura worked in Uganda as a research intern for the Uganda Human Rights Commission. At the time of her fellowship she was pursuing her master’s degree in International Affairs at The Graduate Institute, Geneva. After her fellowship, Laura wrote: “I'm more comfortable in my skin now, and after a couple of years of wondering where I belong, I'm now sure that it's overseas in the development world. I love Burundi and I'm desperate to go back.”



Not a good sign…

04 Aug

Yesterday, a senior member of the government (people have told me different stories on which) was on national radio denouncing the Belgian ambassador and Belgian interference in the country, finishing with an accusation of homosexuality. As I posted yesterday, this is a pretty serious insult in a country where it’s punishable with up to two years in gaol.

In other news, police attempted to arrest the leader of the opposition. As far as I can work out he isn’t actually in gaol (police surrounding the house where he was visiting friends at the time of the arrest) but they have seized his computer and diary from his office. This follows the arrest of several opposition politicians and journalists earlier in the year on trumped-up treason charges, and, needless to say, is not a positive sign for those hoping for free and fair elections next year.

Working out what’s going on here is pretty tricky as almost all the media is in Kirundi, but I’m going to try and meet up for a beer with some people later and will post if I can work it all out. But my instinctive reaction is that denouncing the former colonial power combined with arrests and intimidation of the opposition and press reminds me strongly of another African country further south…

Posted By Laura Gordon

Posted Aug 4th, 2009

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