Citation: 2020 RLLR 36
Tribunal: Refugee Protection Division
Date of Decision: February 13, 2020 (date of transcription)
Counsel for the Claimant(s): N/A
RPD Number: MB8-27400
ATIP Number: A-2021-00655
ATIP Pages: 000035-000039
 This is the claim of [XXX] in file number MB8-27400, citizen of Burundi, and claiming refugee protection under Sections 96 and 97(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. And, alleging a well-founded fear of persecution, by reason of your imputed political opinions.
 I conclude that you have established that there is a serious possibility of persecution on a Convention ground.
 Regarding your allegations, you have alleged the following. You are [XXX], from Burundi and a member of the Tutsi ethnic group. You fear, that should you return to Burundi, you will be perceived as an opponent of the government and subsequently face persecution at the hands of State authorities, including NISS, members of the CNDD-FDD Party, and the Imbonerakures. This fear is based on a number of factors. One being that prior to leaving Burundi, in 2014, at the end of… at the early [XXX] … in [XXX] 2015, in 2014 you were a student activist, and you had represented students at your youth university opposing a change in school policy, which brought you to the attention of the authorities at that time.
 Not long after that event, you went to the U.S. on [XXX] 2015, with a Student Visa. And, you did seek asylum in the U.S. Your asylum application is still pending, but after receiving a letter from the Immigration authorities advising you that your asylum processing would be on the basis of a last… and first out, you decided to come to Canada because of the delays in having your claim processed in the U.S.
 While being in the U.S.A., the situation in Burundi deteriorated, and there was also persecution towards ex-FAB members. The fact that your father is an ex-FAB, and the fact that you are a young Tutsi from Bujumbura, and who has resided out of the country for a number of years, are additional reasons why you fear persecution should you return to Burundi.
 Regarding your identity, it has been established by acceptable documentation, namely your passport.
 Regarding credibility, the onus is on refugee claimants to demonstrate the elements of their claim for refugee protection. And, regarding credibility, there is also a principle which is laid out in the Federal Court decision called Maldonado, which states that when a refugee claimant swears that certain facts are true, this creates a presumption that they are true, unless there is a valid reason to doubt their truthfulness. In your case, you testified in a spontaneous and detailed manner, and your testimony was consistent with the evidence on file. And, I do not make a negative conclusion regarding your credibility. In support of your claim, you also filed a number of documents. You supported documents to confirm your attendance at university in Burundi in 2014. Documents to corroborate your father is an ex-FAB. And, documents regarding your asylum application in the U.S.A.
 Your allegations are also corroborated by objective evidence on country conditions. The documentary evidence in the National Documentation Package, in 13.6, indicates that Burundi has been in a crisis since the President announced in April 2015 a third mandate, and that since then the political and ethnic tensions in the country have increased, particularly for persons who would be perceived as an opponent. Which is a serious possibility, given your student activism, your father being ex-FAB and your ethnicity. Your father was a former soldier of the former Tutsi-dominated army called the ex-FAB. The documentary evidence in tabs 2.13 and 13.1 of the National Documentation Package support that ex-FAB members are being persecuted. According to sources, there is a purging of ex-FAB soldiers from the former Tutsi-dominated army. Human rights organizations have received on a regular basis information regarding assassinations, forced disappearance, torture, and arbitrary arrests of ex-FAB members.
 With regards to ethnicity, you are a young male Tutsi, whose family resided in Bujumbura, an area that is at times considered hostile to the government. The objective evidence on country conditions supports that those who are perceived as opposing the government in power do face persecution, and the current situation in Burundi has deteriorated for political opponents and for the gen… the population in general in the country. Following the presidential elections held in July 2015, Burundi has been shaken by wave killings of members of political parties of all sides. These killings exemplify the climate of general insecurity in the country. A U.S. Country report stated that there were numerous reports the government, or its agents, committed arbitrary or unlawful killings, often against perceived supporters of the political opposition or those who exercise their lawful rights. The 2018 report of the U.N. Commission Inquiry, whose members were denied access to the country by the government, but who conducted interviews with more than 400 witnesses living in exile, restated its conclusion from the previous year and found reason to believe that arbitrary killings remain a widespread practice in Burundi, and that members of the National Intelligence Service, police and Imbonerakures, were mostly responsible for these killings.
 Regarding your ethnicity, the documentary evidence would also indicate the following in 13.1, in a report that was published in 2016 by the International Federation of Human Rights and the Burundian Human Rights League, state that while the ethnic factor is not always the primary motivation for crimes committed by the Burundian security forces, it tends to become an indicator of the violence exercised by the Burundian authorities against those they suspect of being opposed to the President’s third term. The same source states that Tutsi populations are thus perceived as being opposed by nature to the power in place and are persecuted for this reason. And that, according to another source, Burundi’s ongoing political crisis has not occurred primarily on ethnic nine… ethnic lines, nonetheless in some places in the country violence has taken on explicitly violent dimensions. In most instances of ethnically charged violence, and this is violence that has largely targeted Tutsis.
 Regarding State protection, taking into consideration the objective evidence regarding the situation in Burundi and of those perceived as opponents, and those who are Tutsi, as I indicated earlier, there are reports that indicate authorities have been the perpetrators of acts of violence towards persons in your… in your situation or a similar situation. Therefore, due to the current situation in Burundi at this time and the overall insecurity in the country, I find that it would be unreasonable for you to seek State protection, and the presumption of State protection is rebutted.
INTERNAL FLIGHT ALTERNATIVE
 Regarding an internal flight alternative, haven’t take… having taken into consideration your particular circumstances and profile, I find that the fear you have alleged would be found throughout the country, and therefore a viable alter… internal flight alternative would not be available.
 Having analyzed the evidence as a whole, I find that you have discharged your burden of establishing that there is a serious possibility that you would be persecuted on a Convention ground, and therefore I accept your claim for refugee protection. Alright, ok. So, that puts an end to the hearing.