Central African Republic clashes 'kill 75' in Boda town

A Congolese peacekeeper displays various weapons seized from Anti-Balaka Christian militiamen in Bangui on 1 February 2014 France is working with some 4,000 troops from African countries to help end the violence which has seen about a million people - 20% of the population - flee their homes

Sectarian fighting in the Central African Republic town of Boda since Tuesday has left at least 75 people dead, a local priest has said.

Father Cassien Kamatari said help was needed to stop the violence between Muslims and Christians.

The majority of those confirmed dead were Christian, Fr Kamatari said.

Because Muslim victims were buried soon after the attacks it was not known how many of them were killed, he said.

There have been widespread reports of revenge attacks since mainly Muslim fighters withdrew from the capital Bangui last month.

They did so following the resignation of interim President Michel Djotodia.

Correspondents say that while the security situation in Bangui has improved since the peacekeepers' arrival, outbreaks of violence continue in the north and west of CAR.

'Horrific'

"Instead of thinking only of Bangui, people must also think of what's happening in the countryside because what we are living through in these communities is horrific,'' Fr Kamatari said.

French Army Chief of Staff Admiral Edouard Guillaud (left) walks with the commander of the Sangaris operation, General Francisco Soriano (right) on 3 February 2014 at the Mpoko camp in Bangui French generals trying to stop the violence have found that their resources on the ground are becoming increasingly stretched

He said that the violence began when heavily-armed Muslims erected barricades at the entrance and exit to the town - 100km (60 miles) west of Bangui - and began attacking Christians.

"At least 60 people were killed and many others injured, 15 of whom died of their injuries," he said.

Fr Kamatari said he called French and African Union forces for help, but got no response. He said that his parish was sheltering 1,500 people trying to flee the violence.

France, the former colonial power, has 1,600 troops in the country, working with some 4,000 troops from African countries to help end the violence which has seen about a million people - 20% of the population - flee their homes.

The UN said last month that it believed at least 10,000 troops may be required in any force sent to end the unrest.

More on This Story

CAR strife

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Africa stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • MouseEscape the rat race

    Burnt out? Meet the workers who took more than a vacation - and changed their lives

Programmes

  • (File photo) A man dressed as Father Christmas with a sleigh and a reindeer Click Watch

    A website which tracks Father Christmas, plus other sites and apps to keep you entertained

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.