CENTRAL AFRICA REPUBLIC: CLASHES CAUSE 25 DEATHS IN 48 HOURS

The United Nations has warned of a ‘rise in tension in certain regions’ following a series of blasts around the town of Bambari which was so far killed 25 people.

The UN force MINUSCA said Saturday : “Six gendarmes and four civilians lost their lives on Friday morning in an ambush on the Bambari-Grimari road,” MINUSCA said in a statement on Saturday. “The day before, clashes between elements of the anti-balaka and ex-Seleka [militias] caused 15 deaths and a number of wounded.”

CAR’s descent into sectarian bloodshed began after the March 2013 ouster of President Francois Bozize, a Christian, by the mostly Muslim Seleka rebel alliance. This in turn triggered a cycle of revenge attacks between Christian and Muslim groups in which thousands were slaughtered and around a tenth of the population of 4.5 million were displaced.

MINUSCA, a UN stabilization force, said six police and four civilians were killed in an ambush by armed men Friday morning, while on Thursday, 15 people died in fighting on the town’s outskirts between Seleka militia and Christian vigilante groups; a separate incident in which UN peacekeepers were attacked near the Bambari airport left a 7-year-old child injured.

The UN seeks to support the administration of President Faustin-Archange Touadera, who was elected in February.

Earlier this month, 30 people were killed and 57 wounded when Seleka fighters staged an attack in the central town of Kaga Bandoro. Days later 11 people were shot dead in a camp for displaced people in Ngakobo, northeast of Bangui.

Adding to the strife, MINUSCA has been dogged by dozens of allegations of sexual abuse,prompting a broad UN inquiry. Criticism of the 13,000-strong mission has mounted in recent weeks with local civilians accusing peacekeepers of not doing enough to protect them.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK.