Rebel attacks kill 32 in Central African Republic

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Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) – Rebel attacks in northwest Central African Republic over the weekend killed at least 30 civilians and two soldiers, local officials said on Tuesday.

Simultaneous attacks hit the villages of Kaita and Bayengou on Sunday, near the border with Cameroon some 500 kilometers (300 miles) north of the capital Bangui, said regional administrator Esaie Gbanin, whose death toll has been confirmed. by a humanitarian source.

Many residents have fled to Cameroon, Gbanin added.

The Central African Republic, the second least developed country in the world according to the UN ranking, was plunged into a bloody civil war after a coup in 2013.

The conflict has subsided over the past three years, although large swathes of territory remain outside the control of the central government.

Gbanin blamed Sunday’s attacks on elements of the 3R (Return, Recovery, Rehabilitation) rebels. The 3Rs, which are mainly made up of fighters from the Fulani ethnic group, is one of the most powerful armed groups in the country.

At the end of December 2020, they joined the rebel coalition which sought to overthrow President Faustin Archange Touadera and prevent his re-election.

Touadera prevailed and government forces have since recaptured towns and much of two-thirds of the country that the rebels controlled, mainly thanks to Rwandan soldiers and the presence of hundreds of Russian mercenaries fighting alongside them.

The European Commission said on Tuesday that the presence of Russian mercenaries from the Wagner Group could lead the EU to suspend its military training mission in the Central African Republic.

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