Amid reports of gunfire and grenade attacks, an estimated 3.8 million Burundians are expected to vote on Tuesday in a one-sided election, which will once again reinstate President Pierre Nkurunziza into power for a third-term.
Burundian presidential election 2015 is being held despite widespread opposition from the citizens and condemnation from international agencies.
Two people, a policeman and a civilian, were killed on the eve of the election. There were also reports of blasts and shootings in the wee hours as polls opened in the capital of Bujumbura, which was centre of the dozens of anti-government protests, Times Live reported.
President Nkurunziza's office condemned the attacks as "terrorist acts" aimed at "intimidating voters".
Burundi Elections Live Updates
4.00 PM IST Burundi Elections Lack Credibility , Says United States
In an official statement the United States had warned that elections held under the current conditions in Burundi will not be credible and will further discredit the government.
3.45 PM IST Burundi Government Urges Citizens to Vote
Burundian government on behalf of President Pierre Nkurunziza asked all citizens to participate in the democratic process, as it gives them a 'voice and choice.'
— Burundi | Présidence (@BdiPresidence) July 21, 2015
3.30 PM IST Turnout Remained Low in the Morning
Reports from Burundi claim that the turned has remained low. In some places, campaign workers and police officers outnumber the voters at the polling booth. Many chose not to vote in the Presidential elections calling it a 'political theatre,' NYTimes reports.
3.15 PM IST Security Intensified outside Polling Booths
It is being reported that security outside polling stations have been intensified, and voters are being search thoroughly before they are allowed to enter the polling booths, BBC reports.
VIDEO: Burundi voters searched amid violence http://t.co/hgdeO8mswE
— Top World News (@TopNewsA1) July 21, 2015
3.00 PM IST Protests Breakout in Bujumbura
BBC Journalist, Zoe Flood tweeted that there have been incidents protests in Bujumbura where Nyakabiga residents lit up a barricade as the community mourned the overnight of a local resident.A graffiti on the streets of Nyakabiga has appeared which says "Nkurunziza = killer".
— Zoe Flood (@Zoe_Flood) July 21, 2015
2.45 PM IST Opposition Leader asks Citizens to Boycott Elections
Charles Nditije, leader of the Uprona party, which is part of the opposition Amizero Y'abarundi coalition, has asked the international community not to recognise the Burundi Presidential elections as legitimate. He also asked the nationals to boycott the elections in which President Nkurunziza stands unopposed.
"I am urging Burundi citizens not to go to polls this July 21 which are not democratic," he told Reuters via phone in the capital Bujumbura.
2.30 PM IST Voters Scared
Journalists covering the Burundian elections report that saw several people trying to washing off the indelible ink from their fingers.
While the voting continues across the country, there have been reports of gunfire and grenade attacks. A man, reportedly an opposition party official, was found dead in Bujumbura, The Independent reports.
— harumutasa/aljazeera (@harumutasa) July 21, 2015
2.00 PM IST Burundi President casts his Vote
Burundi's President Pierre Nkurunziza, dressed in a tracksuit, cycled his way to the polling booth. He, along with his wife, stood in the queue along with other voters at his hometown of Ngozi.
— William N (@WilliamNdizeye) July 21, 2015
1.00 PM IST Elections Underway in Burundi
The polling stations opened at 0400 GMT and around 3.8 million nations are expected to vote by the time the booths close at around 1300 GMT.