World Bulletin / News Desk
Recent fighting in the Central African Republic has raised tensions between religious communities and has threatened the rebel-led government. The town of Bouca, which was left in ruins following an attack targeting Muslims a week ago.
The fighting started at 5 a.m., at the time of morning prayers. Those who survived say the killers came from within their own community, reported the VOA.
Entire families were murdered, at least 40 people total. Hundreds of homes were burned in just a few hours.
Resident Mandera Liman said he ran to get a gun to defend his family, but was too late. "I heard them yelling 'Kill him, kill the Muslim.' They came, they took my father and they killed him here," he said.
The attacks were blamed on militia loyal to former president Francois Bozize, ousted in March by the Muslim Seleka rebel movement. Last month, Seleka installed the country's first Muslim president to lead a political transition.
People here say Muslims and Christians had lived in peace together until the most recent fighting.
Seleka authorities believe the anti-Muslim violence is an orchestrated attempt by followers of the former president to try to create divisions and weaken the transitional government.