Since the assassination of Burundi's first elected head of state in 1993 by a small group of extremist army troops, the population has been decimated by violence, mainly pitting the Tutsi-dominated army against Hutu rebels, with both Hutu and Tutsi civilians caught in the crossfire. In this climate, being part of the independent press is equated with betrayal, and taking an independent stance is extremely dangerous. Consequently, reporters have begun to work in multi-ethnic teams since the Balkanization of much of the country had made reporting physically impossible for individual journalists from either side. Studio Ijambo set the model for others to follow, and its courageous radio broadcasts reporting on more than 40 massacres involving the national army or armed rebels form the sole coverage of pivotal events that would otherwise have gone undocumented.

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