Defaced pics of Burundi's Nkurunziza flood Twitter in support of jailed girls

There has been an outcry on social media over the arrests, with many calling for the girls' release and an end to what has been called censorship in the east African country.

Picture: @Rwanyubuja/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - People from different parts of the world are using defaced pictures of Burundi President Pierre Nkurunziza to show solidarity with three schoolgirls who were arrested for doodling on his picture in five textbooks.

The girls, aged 15, 16 and 17, face up to five years in prison for insulting the head of state if found guilty.

Judges had said the three girls should be "prosecuted for contempt of the head of state", and ordered them to a juvenile section of a prison in the north of Burundi at Ngozi to await trial.

There has been an outcry on social media over the arrests, with many calling for the girls' release and an end to what has been called censorship in the east African country.

Over the past few days, defaced pictures along with messages of support have popped up on Twitter.