[QODLink]
Africa

Central African Republic declares curfew

Announcement made on state television as country descends into violence prompting warnings of genocide.

Last updated: 22 Nov 2013 20:49
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Since taking power, the Seleka rebels have plunged the country into a state of near-anarchy [AP]

The Central African Republic has announced a countrywide curfew from 10pm to 5am in a presidential decree read on state radio.

The announcement came late on Friday as the troubled nation spiralled into conflict, pitting the Muslim rebels who seized power in a coup earlier this year against the nation's mostly Christian population.

Earlier this week, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius warned in an interview that the nation is on the verge of genocide.

The country's Christian president, Francois Bozize, fled the capital in March as the Seleka rebels overran the city.

Rebel leader Michel Djotodia proclaimed himself president, but since taking power he has been unable to control the rebels, who have run amok over the chronically poor nation. The fighters are accused of gruesome massacres.

One of the world's poorest countries with a long history of chaos and coups, the Central African Republic has been in turmoil since a coalition of rebel groups joined forces and overthrew the president in March and put their leader in charge.

'Looting, killings, rapes'

Since taking power, the Seleka rebels and their allies from neighboring Chad and Sudan have plunged the country into a state of near-anarchy.

They have been accused by human rights groups of committing scores of atrocities, of widespread looting, killings, rapes and conscription of child soldiers.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on the UN Security Council to authorise international support to an existing African Union-led peace operation in the country and to permit emergency intervention from UN forces if needed.

So far, the African Union force has about 2,590 personnel on the ground, the majority in the capital, Bangui.

258

Source:
Associated Press
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Featured on Al Jazeera
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Israel's Operation Protective Edge is the third major offensive on the Gaza Strip in six years.
Muslims and Arabs in the US say they face discrimination in many areas of life, 13 years after the 9/11 attacks.
At one UN site alone, approximately four children below the age of five are dying each day.
Featured
The world's newest professional sport comes from an unlikely source: video games.
The group's takeover of farms in Qaraqosh, 30km from Mosul, has caused fear among residents, and a jump in food prices.
Protests and online activism in recent months have brought a resurgence of ethnic Oromo nationalism in Ethiopia.
Chemotherapy is big business, but some US doctors say it could be overused and are pushing for cheaper and better care.
Amid vote audit and horse-trading, politicians of all hues agree a compromise is needed to avoid political instability.
join our mailing list