French try to stop looting in Central African Republic

French army Chief of Staff Admiral Edouard Guillaud talks to members of the media during an official visit at a French military base of Mpoko, at the airport of the capital Bangui. (Reuters)

French troops in Central African Republic are struggling to control the looting of Muslim homes and businesses in the volatile capital.

Hundreds of French and African peacekeepers fanned out through the Miskine neighborhood of Bangui on Monday. They fired tear gas and warning shots in a seemingly futile bid to quell the violence. The neighborhood mosque already had been thoroughly trashed by angry mobs.

The violence against Bangui’s Muslim minority comes after months of brutal rule by a mostly Muslim rebel coalition that overthrew the government last March.

Resentment toward the rebels’ abuses spawned an armed Christian militia. Christian civilians, though, are now targeting anyone who is Muslim.

Victims have been slain and mutilated on the streets and homes and mosques have been looted and destroyed.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:42 - GMT 06:42