Rebels of the Coalition of Patriots for Change (CPC) have been reported to have taken over Bria, the chief town of Haute-Kotto prefecture in the Central African Republic.
Locals said the rebels who arrived in the town about a week ago have occupied space 18 kilometres from Bria on the Ippy highway.
“Since Wednesday, March 30, CPC rebels have been occupying space 18 kilometres from Bria on the Ippy highway and they have been blocking traffic for several hours each day,” a civil society source told HumAngle.
According to the CPC rebels, military pressure on the government of President Faustin Archange Touadera is no longer sufficient.
“Economic pressure is also necessary, that is to say, disrupt commercial activities in the region. The strategy is to cut the principal supply routes to the town of Bria whenever the opportunity arises. This is no longer just an idea, it is the reality now,” a political activist close to the CPC who declined to reveal his identity for fear of reprisals revealed.
“On Wednesday, March 30, to the surprise of the population, several tens of heavily-armed rebels appeared in the village of Yangou-Mango, 18 kilometres on the Ippy highway and blocked circulation for several hours.”
He said vehicles from Bria carrying passengers were forced to turn back just as those coming from Ippy.
“The rebels insisted that they would block traffic for at least 24 hours until March 31, 2022. This they did and traffic only resumed yesterday, March 31.” the civil society source revealed.
Residents are confused as to whether the rebels making life difficult for them are the same group of rebels who last week appeared in Sans Souci village, 42 kilometres from Bria.
“The civilian populations are the orphans in all what is happening in the Central African Republic right now. When the CPC and other rebels arrive in town, they torment us, kill some of us and seize our food and properties,” Pascal Ngagou, who said he is a political activist, lamented.
“One would have expected that the national army would be our saviours. But no. When they too and their Russian mercenary allies come to town, they do almost the same things as the rebels. They torture us, kill us, burn our houses and properties and take away goods from shops.”
“Who then are our protectors now? We have none. We have become orphans in our own country.”
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