Armed ViolenceNews

Central African Republic Soldiers, Anti-Balaka Rebels Kill Bokolobo Villagers

The killing was believed to be a retaliatory action after the double attack of FACA positions on Monday May 9, by UPC rebels where two FACA soldiers and militia of the pro-Touadera faction of the Anti-Balaka were killed.

Soldiers of the Central African Republic national army, FACA, supported by an Anti-Balaka militia faction supporting President Faustin Archange Touadera on Monday May 9, killed 23 persons in Bokolobo village, 60 km from Bambari on the Alindao highway.

According to local sources, the incident happened after the double attack of FACA positions on Monday May 9, morning by rebels of the Unite pour la Paix en Centrafrique (UPC) during which two FACA soldiers and militia of the pro-Touadera faction of the Anti-Balaka were killed.

But at about 1 p.m. CAT, FACA soldiers supported by Anti-Balaka militia invaded Bokolobo village, killing indiscriminately, one of the sources said.

“In all, at least 23 persons were counted dead and 15 others reported missing,” a civil society source in the village who opted for anonymity told HumAngle by phone.

HumAngle understands that four days ago, three Muslim Peul youths were arrested at their homes by FACA soldiers and  tortured, with their money seized from them.

“Two of the three youths eventually succeeded in running away but the third one was killed,” a villager who did not want to be named said.

“When the UPC rebels got the news, they promised retaliation and subsequently attacked the town on Saturday, May 7, 2022 shooting indiscriminately.”

“FACA soldiers who could not withstand the ferocious attack of the rebels ran into hiding. The rebels withdrew from the town but returned some hours later and attacked army positions killing two FACA soldiers and eight Anti-Balaka militia.”

The killing by the FACA soldiers and pro-Touadera faction of Anti-Balaka, was believed to be a retaliatory action against the Peuls.

Though most of the UPC rebels are Peuls, some of them are of the Ouadah tribe who come mostly from Chad and majority of them are against the Peuls. Any alliance between the two ethnic groups, (Peuls and Oudah) is a mere marriage of convenience.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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