The Tutsi, Hutu and Twa people have inhabited the area for at least 500 years. About 85% of Burundians are of Hutu origin, 15% are Tutsi and less than 1% are indigenous Twa or Pygmies.
Today, about 500,000 people in Burundi have been displaced due to the effects of AIDS, which has impacted the country significantly. Many people from Burundi have migrated to nearby countries due to civil war. In 2006, the U.S. accepted about 10,000 Burundian refugees.
Much of Burundi remains rural, and only 13% of the country lives in an urban area. Just over 1% of the population has electricity, and only 50% of children go to school. About 1 in 15 adults in Burundi have HIV/AIDS. The AIDS epidemic in the country has dramatically affected its demographics, displacing more than 500,000.
Burundi Religion, Economy and Politics
Burundi is a fairly religiously diverse country, but 86% of the population practices some form of Christianity. Within the Christian population, 62.1% are Roman Catholic, and 23.9% are Protestant. Aside from Christianity, numbers vary about estimates of the populations of other religions. Muslims make up for anywhere from 2.5-10% of the population, while there remaining portion practice a variety of other religions.
As a landlocked nation, Burundi has a hard time accessing many resources and is generally pretty underdeveloped. The largest industry in Burundi is agriculture, which makes up for 32.9% of their GDP, and employs over 70% of the population. Even though they produce a lot of food, overpopulation, and a generally poor economy has kept much of the population hungry and is, in fact, the world's hungriest country with 40% of the country needing more to eat. Burundi is one of the 5 poorest countries in the world with one of the lowest per capita GDPs. It has suffered from many problems, including limited education, widespread corruption, and warfare.
Burundi Population History
The distinct Burundian kingdom emerged during the 1500s and there were no major disruptions until Germany and Belgian forces began to occupy the land in the late 1800s and early 1900s. In 1959, there was a massive influx of refugees from the Ruandam half of the land due to ethnically-related violence there.
Urundi seceded in 1962 and the country became an independent kingdom the name of of the country changed to Burundi. Settling into their own was not easy, and over 120,000 Hutus were massacred by the government in 1972 over political issues. This kind of civil unrest has been fairly constant ever since, and an ethnic-based war that has gone on for more than ten years has killed about 200,000 people, displaced 140,000 internally, and forced about 48,000 refugees into Tanzania.