Militiamen Killed a UN Peacekeeper in Central African Republic
07/14/2020 Central African Republic (International Christian Concern) – On Monday, July 13th, the armed militiamen killed a Rwandan United Nations (U.N.) peacekeeper, injuring two others in the northwest part of the Central African Republic. The U.N. stated that “the attack in the Nana-Mambéré prefecture, was allegedly carried out by the Return, Reclamation, and Rehabilitation (3R) armed group.”
The Central African Republic has been rocked by violence since 2013 when mainly Muslim Séléka rebels ousted then-President Francois Bozizé, prompting reprisals from mostly Christian militias. The violence has led to hundreds of deaths and almost 700,000 internally displaced people (IDPs). It has also pushed more than 500,000 people to seek refuge in neighboring countries such as Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and Chad. A year later, in 2014, the U.N. deployed peacekeepers.
Violence waned after a peace accord was signed in February 2019 between the government and 14 armed groups, including the 3R, following talks in Khartoum. But like previous agreements, this one has shown signs of falling apart.
Multiple attacks attributed to 3R rebels have increased in the northwest of the country since the 3R’s leader announced their withdrawal from the 2019 peace agreement. The attacks have seen an increase in tensions across Nana-Mambéré and Ouham-Pende in anticipation of further rebel activity, with hundreds of people reported to have fled remote communities in some areas.
Much of the tension is over religious identity between Muslim Séléka fighters and Christian anti-balaka. Ongoing violence between Muslim-majority ex-Séléka militias and Christian-majority anti-balaka militias. It has resulted in thousands of people dead, 2.4 million in need of humanitarian assistance, and more than 542,000 refugees and 688,000 IDPs as of the end of 2017.
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