OIC Condemns Violence in Central African Republic

Istanbul, MINA – The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Monday condemned the recent violence against civilians in Central African Republic.

“We condemn the human rights abuses, especially the mass killings and executions directed at civilians, including women and children,” Anadolu Agency reported, citing a statement by OIC Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) .

The statement came after the Oct. 13 attack on a mosque in southeast Kembe town that left 26 people dead and reports of violence in Pombolo, a village in the Lower Kotto province.

“Additionally we strongly condemn torture, ill-treatment, forced detention, sexual abuse and looting, as well as the attacks on places of worship,” it said.

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The exact circumstances of the violence which broke out last week in Pombolo are not clear, but according to initial reports, the assailants are believed to belong to the Christian anti-Balaka group.

The IPHRC called for “immediate end” of violence against the civilians and urged international and regional institutions, particularly officials of the Central African Republic and the United Nations Security Council to “take urgent measures to stop the ongoing violence and stop the bloodshed”.

Violence erupted in the central African state in 2013, when Seleka rebels ousted then-President Francois Bozize, a Christian leader, who came to power in a 2003 coup.

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Fierce fighting has continued between Muslim Seleka and Christian anti-Balaka rebels, forcing nearly half of the country’s population to depend on humanitarian assistance, according to the UN.

The anti-Balaka militia recruits fighters from the southern and western parts of the country.

The Seleka is an alliance of several armed groups from the majority-Muslim northeastern part of the country.

The IPHRC, in particular, expressed its grave concern over the rising number of violent attacks by the “Anti-Balaka” militia against innocent citizens throughout the country. (T/RS5/RS1)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)