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Gunmen carry out deadly attack in refugee camp in Central African Republic

MARCO LONGARI / AFP | (archive) This file photo taken on December 13, 2015 in Bangui, shows a Senegalese soldier from the MINUSCA, the United Nations mission in Central African Republic, running for cover under heavy gunfire.

Eleven people were shot dead on Saturday in a camp for displaced people in Central African Republic, the UN's MINUSCA mission said, days after 30 others were killed in fresh sectarian violence.


"Eleven people were killed and about 10 others taken to hospital" after an unknown number of gunmen began shooting in the camp for internally displaced people in Ngakobo, 300 kilometres (180 miles) northeast of the capital Bangui, a statement said.

"Those responsible for these dreadful acts" have not been identified, the communiqué, in French, said.

MINUSCA, which has around 12,000 peacekeepers and police on the ground, "immediately took measures to reinforce its position around the displaced camp and to step up its patrols", it said.

On Wednesday, 30 people died and 57 others were wounded when fighters from a mainly-Muslim militia group attacked civilians and clashed with UN peacekeepers in the central town of Kaga Bandoro.

The fighters then attacked a camp for displaced people as well as NGO offices. UN troops from Burundi and Pakistan hit back to protect civilians, killing 12 of the assailants.

The week before, a dozen people died in the capital in fighting between Muslim forces and Christian vigilantes.

CAR plunged into chaos after the March 2013 ousting of long-serving president Francois Bozize by the northeastern Seleka rebel alliance -- triggering revenge attacks and a spiral of atrocities in which thousands were slaughtered.

The violence between rival militias, which later took on a sectarian element, displaced one in 10 of the country's 4.5 million people.

After two years of bloodshed, however, CAR had appeared to be returning to normal, holding peaceful elections early this year following a visit by the pope.

But despite the presence of thousands of UN peacekeepers and a few hundred remaining French troops, tensions remain high and tens of thousands of people are still displaced and in need of aid. Fears remain that the armed groups have not been disarmed.


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