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06/13/2019 Central African Republic (International Christian Concern) – Fifty people were reportedly killed and several others wounded in an armed attack in the northwestern region of the Central African Republic (CAR). This attack comes as a complete shock and moves the country several steps back after a peace agreement was signed between the government and 14 armed groups in February. The violence occurred in several villages near the town of Paoua which is very close to the Chad border.

The group that perpetrated the attack, Return, Reconciliation, Rehabilitation, or simply 3R, are suspected to be responding to the killing of an ethnic (Peul) and Muslim government spokesman, Ange Kazagui. The attack was perpetrated in a Christian majority township.

Then they started to tie us up. They tore my shirt to tie my arms,” Alphonse, a resident of one of the villages told Open Doors. “They piled us on top of each other, then started shooting. It felt like it was raining bullets.

CAR, a predominantly Christian nation, has experienced deep ethnoreligious violence since 2013. The violence began when Selaka rebels, representing the country’s Muslim minority, overthrew the then reigning President David Dacko. Christian militias responded to the overthrow with violent attacks, erupting into a back and forth battle which is still ongoing.

The overall effect of the violence on Christians is not fully known but it is estimated that about 2.9 million have lost their lives over the past six years. While Christian militia and Muslim militia are consistently attacking each other, innocent people, including Christians and Muslims, have been caught up in the violence.

For interviews, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: [email protected].