Friday, May 22, 2015Friday, May 22, 2015

Militia truce offers glimmer of hope for Central Africa

Published on Jan 12, 2014 9:11 PM

BANGUI, Central African Republic (AFP) - Rival militiamen struck a truce on Sunday and hugged each other in a neighbourhood of the Central African Republic's (CAR's) capital on the eve of consultations aimed at replacing the president who resigned under international pressure.

The event reported by witnesses and CAR's chief of staff offered a glimmer of hope that weeks of deadly sectarian violence would end following the resignation on Friday of Mr Michel Djotodia, the mainly Christian country's first Muslim president who left to Benin on Saturday.

It followed deadly weekend violence including reports of cannibalism and widespread looting in the capital Bangui. The situation in Bangui was calmer overnight on Saturday but looting was still occurring on Sunday.

CAR chief of staff General Ferdinand Bomboyeke confirmed witness accounts of the laying down of arms which he said occurred after a "deal obtained" by the rivals fighting for days in a southern part of Bangui called Bimbo.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!