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Monday, October 24, 2016
Central African Republic: Carmelites report spiralling civil war
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┬áCarmelite missionaries working in the Central African Republic have appealed for the international community to intervene in the civil war there. In an open letter received by Missionary News Service yesterday, a group of Carmelites forced to abandon their mission at Bozoum, when it was pillaged and devastated by troops of rebel leader BozizÚ, expressed their concerns. "The situation is steadily deteriorating" they said. As the territory under rebel control extends, we are becoming prisoners in our own homes." On Wednesday, militias linked to former chief of staff Franšois BozizÚ attacked an inhabited centre in the northern zone of the country which is now mainly under their control. Another group targeted BossentelÚ, around 280km north-west of the capital Bangui. Some rebels, who had been wounded in a road accident, asked the Italian Carmelite sisters to give them medical treatment. They did not harm the sisters but did ask them for money and on a rather threatening note, saying: "Go, because we intend to return to the city and continue our march toward Bangui within a few days". The Carmelites expressed fears that the government troops appear to be ill-equipped and unable to protect the people from rebel attacks. In recent weeks most news of the conflict has come from missionaries. The army has few radios. The missionaries say they hope Italy may intervene. So far only France, Germany and China have agreed to sponsor an inter-African peace contingent. source: MISNA
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