Funeral attack leaves 12 dead in CAR capital Bangui

Abdelaziz Meriga, deputy head of the Muslim Cadres organization, ruled out the notion that Muslims stood behind the violence.

Funeral attack leaves 12 dead in CAR capital Bangui

World Bulletin / News Desk

Twelve people were killed when unidentified gunmen attacked a funeral procession late on Thursday night in a Christian neighborhood in Bangui, capital of the troubled Central African Republic, according to eyewitnesses.

"The procession came under fire late Thursday," one resident told Anadolu Agency on Friday.

"There were reports that many people were killed and others injured," he added.

Local resident Alain Panga said he lost three family members to the attack.

"The whole neighborhood was teeming with clashes over the past 24 hours," he said.

No group has so far claimed responsibility for the attack, nor have local authorities officially commented on it.

MUSLIMS CONDEMN VIOLENCE

Abdelaziz Meriga, deputy head of the Muslim Cadres organization, ruled out the notion that Muslims stood behind the violence.

"What happened was terrible; I don't think Muslims were involved," Meriga told Anadolu Agency.

The landlocked, mineral-rich Central African Republic descended into anarchy one year ago when seleka rebels – thought to be largely Muslims – ousted Francois Bozize, a Christian who had come to power in a 2003 coup.

The rebels later installed Michel Djotodia, a Muslim, as interim president.

Since then, the country has been plagued by tit-for-tat sectarian violence between Christian anti-balaka militias and former seleka fighters.

Anti-Muslim violence has escalated since January, when Catherine Samba-Panza, a Christian, was elected interim president.

Christians, who account for the majority of the country's population, accuse Muslims of supporting former seleka rebels blamed for attacking Christian homes, looting property and carrying out summary executions.

Last Mod: 28 Mart 2014, 17:17
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