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ICC Note: As the Islamist insurgency continues in the Central African Republic, it ties ties to the military and police in the country are revealing themselves. Many have questioned the relationship of President Djotodia to the militants, and it appears that he is using them to quell dissent and silence opposition. The assassination of a prominent judge by the Islamists may have been an effort to silence another vocal opponent of Djotodia’s rule.
11/17/2013 Central African Republic (Global Post) – Two civilians were killed in clashes in Central African Republic sparked by the gunning down of a magistrate and his assistant Sunday by former members of the Seleka rebel group, a police source said.
“Two people were killed and others suffered gunshot wounds on Sunday as residents protested the assassination of magistrate Modeste Martineau Bria and his aide-de-camp” in the capital Bangui, said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Bria was “cold-bloodedly” killed by former Seleka rebels who “sped up to them on a motorbike and opened fire”, a para-military police official said earlier Sunday.
The motive for the killing was not yet known.
Protesters “put up barricades and burned tyres to show their anger” said the police source.
Shots fired by ex-Seleka members broke up the protest, the source added, but police officers and soldiers were patrolling the area, where tensions remained high.
The landlocked nation has been mired in chaos since Seleka ousted longtime president Francois Bozize in March.
Seleka leader Michel Djotodia named himself president but agreed to hold elections next year.
He officially dissolved the rebel movement but its members have continued to stage attacks and robberies. Armed gangs, mainly former Seleka loyalists, now dominate outside the capital Bangui.
The country has seen an increase in clashes between former rebels, who are Muslim, and local self-defence groups formed by rural residents who are Christian, in common with around 80 percent of the population.