A civic leader says a prominent Burundian rights activist who was shot and wounded Monday night remains hospitalized with a bullet lodged in his neck.

Gordien Niyungeko of the civic group known as FOCODE said Pierre Claver Mbonimpa is conscious but doctors have yet to remove the bullet as they believe it is too risky to operate on him.

Niyungeko spent Monday night at the victim's bedside in a local hospital after Mbonimpa was hit on his way home in Bujumbura, the capital.

The attack on Mbonimpa has raised fears of revenge attacks on the regime's perceived opponents after a top military general was assassinated Sunday.

Human Rights Watch says Mbonimpa, 67, is one of Burundi's most prominent and respected activists.