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CAR violence re-emerging, Pillay says

Jan. 27, 2014 at 12:25 PM   |   Comments

GENEVA, Switzerland, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said Monday she was alarmed by the deterioration in the security situation in the Central African Republic.

Pillay said she welcomed interim President Catherine Samba-Panza's call for an end to violence in CAR but expressed concern following reports of clashes last week between members of Christian anti-balaka militias and the rival Seleka rebel coalition.

"There is a need to urgently restore security not only in [the nation's capital] Bangui but also in other parts of the country," she said in a statement.

Seleka toppled the civilian government in March. Former President Michel Djotodia, a former Seleka rebel leader, took over after the rebellion, but quickly lost control of the situation.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry issued a statement Sunday expressing alarm over the security situation in CAR.

"We are also deeply disturbed by reports that some CAR leaders may be supporting attacks by anti-balaka and Seleka, respectively, instead of working for peace and reconciliation," he said.

Pillay said parts of the country are deserted after clashes erupted last week. Members of anti-balaka have threatened international organizations for sheltering Muslim relatives of their staff and at least 10 people were killed in recent fighting, she said.

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