World

Burundi Red Cross: 2 killed in protests against president's 3rd term bid

  • A demonstrator acts as a spotter against police during clashes in the Nyakabyga neighborhood of Bujumbura, Burundi, Thursday May 21, 2015. Protests continue against the President's decision to seek a third term.  ( AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    A demonstrator acts as a spotter against police during clashes in the Nyakabyga neighborhood of Bujumbura, Burundi, Thursday May 21, 2015. Protests continue against the President's decision to seek a third term. ( AP Photo/Jerome Delay)  (The Associated Press)

  • Protester throw stones at police during clashes in the Nyakabyga neighborhood of Bujumbura, Burundi, Thursday May 21, 2015. Protests continue against the  President's decision to seek a third term.  ( AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    Protester throw stones at police during clashes in the Nyakabyga neighborhood of Bujumbura, Burundi, Thursday May 21, 2015. Protests continue against the President's decision to seek a third term. ( AP Photo/Jerome Delay)  (The Associated Press)

  • Protester wait for police during clashes in the Nyakabyga neighborhood of Bujumbura, Burundi, Thursday May 21, 2015. Protests continue against the  President's decision to seek a third term.  ( AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

    Protester wait for police during clashes in the Nyakabyga neighborhood of Bujumbura, Burundi, Thursday May 21, 2015. Protests continue against the President's decision to seek a third term. ( AP Photo/Jerome Delay)  (The Associated Press)

A Burundi Red Cross official says two protesters have been shot dead as pitched battles escalated between police and demonstrators opposed to President Pierre Nkurunziza's bid for a third term.

Red Cross spokesman Alexi Manirakiza said Thursday that a protester from the capital's Ngagara neighborhood was shot dead and another was killed in the Musuga neighborhood.

These deaths raised the number of people killed to at least 18 since the protests began three weeks ago, following the announcement of Nkurunziza's candidacy. More than 230 have been wounded.

The protests boiled over last week when an army general announced a coup which was crushed within 48 hours. Protesters say Nkurunziza's effort to run for president again is illegal because the constitution limits the president to two terms in office.