The Medical charity group, Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) has said that three of its workers were among the 22 people killed by rebels in the northern part of the Central Africa Republic.
The attack was said to have happened on Saturday in the town of Nanga Boguila about 450 km north of the capital Bangui.
Officials have condemned the killings and called for swift investigations into the incident. Fifteen of the dead were said to be local chiefs. The attack has been blamed on the mainly Muslim Seleka rebels.
MSF’s mission head in the country, Stefano Argenziano told the BBC African Service that their key staff had been withdrawn from the clinic in reaction to this unconscionable act.
“We are also examining whether it is feasible to continue operations in other areas before we resume our operations,” he said.
Former Member of Parliament for the area, Gilles Xavier told reporters that the rebels approached the town and went to a health clinic operated by Sans Frontieres in search of money.
He said local chiefs were holding a meeting there at the time and the gunmen opened fire when some of the chiefs tried to escape.
Meanwhile, peacekeepers escorted around 1,300 Muslims out of Bangui on Monday. They were some of the last remaining Muslims in the city.
Local reporters said looters descended on the area the Muslims left and stripped houses, businesses and even mosques.
“We didn’t want the Muslims here and we don’t want their mosque here anymore either,” a looter was quoted by the Associated Press News Agency as saying.
Muslim civilians are being targeted by Christian militias known as anti-balaka in revenge for the seizure of power by mainly Muslim rebels last year.
The anti-balaka says they are taking revenge for atrocities committed by the Muslim rebels, the Seleka when Mr. Djotodia seized power in March 2013. The Seleka rebels overthrew the Bozize regime.
The Central Africa Republic has been in turmoil since the Seleka rebels led by Micheal Djotodia ousted President Francois Bozize last year. President Djotodia resigned in January in a deal that was brokered by regional leaders given way for the first female president of the country, Catherine Samba-Panza but violence continue to threaten the stability of the country.
Around a million people have fled their homes in the crisis and human rights officials say parts of the country have seen religious cleansing between Christians and Muslims.
There are some 5,000 African Union and 2,000 French troops in the country but they have failed to stop the bloodshed. The UN Security Council has approved plans to deploy a peacekeeping mission of 12,000 personnel in the country.
Issaka Adams / NationalTurk Africa News
Writer’s Email Address: Adamsisska@googlemail.com
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