World Bulletin/News Desk
The mainly Muslim seleka militia in the Central African Republic (CAR) has named Gen. Joseph Ndeko as the group's "chief of staff," an Anadolu Agency correspondent has reported.
The announcement came at a major meeting of group members currently underway in Ndele some 500km north of capital Bangui.
Established in August 2012, the seleka militia was drawn from rebel forces opposed to then-president Francois Bozize, a Christian.
The militia managed to remove Bozize from office and install Michel Djotodia, a Muslim, in power one year later. The latter, however, under pressure, resigned earlier this year, to be succeeded by Catherine Samba-Panza, a Christian.
According sources attending the conference, Ndeko was the most qualified candidate in terms of the criteria set for the post, such as military experience and fluency in French.
The two-day congress, which aims to set a future strategy for the Muslim coalition, kicked off earlier Friday in the presence of group leader Gen. Moussa Daffane and 100 leading militia members.
Sources with the group say seleka leaders are mulling the launch of a political party.
"We will meet and discuss all options internally before establishing a roadmap for the group. All options remain possible," Daffane told AA.
Anti-Muslim violence has escalated since January, when Samba-Panza, a Christian, was elected interim president earlier this year.
Since last December, thousands, mostly Muslims, have been killed in sectarian bloodletting throughout the country.
The violence has been blamed on the Christian anti-balaka militia, which accuses Muslims of supporting former seleka rebels blamed for attacking Christian homes, looting property and carrying out summary executions.
According to the U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR), more than 173,000 people have been internally displaced by the violence, while another 37,000 have fled the county.
Last Mod: 10 Mayıs 2014, 00:30