Bangui, Central African Republic: Sixteen people have been killed in two days of clashes between Fulani herdsmen and the mainly Muslim Seleka militia in the Central African Republic, police said on Tuesday.
The chronically unstable nation is struggling to overcome the legacy of three years of deadly conflict between Christians and Muslims that has driven half a million people from their homes.
“According to an initial toll, 16 people, most of them armed Fulani herdsmen, were killed and more than 20 others were wounded in the clashes,” a police officer in the northern town of Kaga Bandoro told AFP on condition of anonymity.
The clashes, which erupted on Sunday, were not connected to a separate wave of violence in the capital Bangui on Monday in which three people were killed.
The officer said the violence in the north began in the region of Batangafo and spread to the towns of Wandago and Gondava.
The clashes are linked to the annual transhumance of Fulani cattle herdsmen, sometimes from neighbouring Cameroon and Chad, into the north of the Central African Republic.
The herdsmen are often armed to protect themselves from attacks from cattle thieves, and they sometimes stage deadly reprisals against the towns where the rustlers are from.
Kaga Bandoro resident Maurice Yanandji said the clashes on Sunday and Monday forced a number of bush residents to flee into the centre of the town.
Courtesy : TheNews