Armed rebels in C. African Republic city agree to leave

Armed rebels in C. African Republic city agree to leave

MINUSCA vigorously condemns this senseless violence against its camp, and most importantly, against the civilian population in Bangassou, a city which has been spared from inter-communal attacks, even at the worst moments of the crisis in the Central African Republic.

The militants have also been targetting United Nations base in the area, prompting the deployment of extra troops to the remote town in anticipation of further attacks.

Fighting in and around Bangassou, in a region on the Congolese border previously sheltered from years of conflict, has also caused an undetermined number of civilian deaths.

The Bangassou field office of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) was also attacked overnight by members of this coalition. Numerous fighters are child soldiers who appeared to be under the influence of drugs, he added.

MINUSCA chief Parfait Onanga-Anyanga told Reuters, "The situation is extremely deplorable and we are doing everything to rapidly retake control of Bangassou".

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed "outrage" and called on the authorities "to investigate the attacks in order to swiftly bring those responsible to justice".

More news: Police fear possible abduction of mother, infant daughter

Radio France International, citing a local source, said hundreds of fighters had taken part in the attacks this weekend and had killed at least 30 people.

Aid workers say that militias seem to be exploiting security voids after Ugandan and French soldiers left in the past few months when their missions ended.

The Catholic Church in the Central African Republic has attempted to persuade the militias to end the assault and leave the town, according to Catholic charity organization Caritas.

"The MINUSCA base was targeted by gunfire at night and the soldiers returned fire", a statement in French said.

UN Humanitarian Coordinator in CAR, Najat Rochdi, said around 1000 people in the town had sought refuge from attacks inside and then found themselves trapped there by the militias.

More than 400,000 people in the former French colony are displaced internally and 2.2 million, or almost half the population, are reliant on aid.

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