UN Force In Central Africa Republic Denies Peacekeepers Killed 3 Protestors

Libreville (AFP) - The UN's peacekeeping force in Central African Republic denied reports its troops had opened fire on protestors in the capital Bangui on Monday after a hospital source said three demonstrators had been killed.

"MINUSCA peacekeeping officers deny (reports) that they opened fire on the population," the mission said in a brief statement sent to AFP journalists in Libreville, capital of Gabon.

"That said, MINUSCA remains concerned by such allegations and will proceed to verifying them," it added.

The statement came after a hospital source told AFP on condition of anonymity that three protestors died and seven were wounded when UN peacekeepers opened fire on a crowd of several hundred heading for the presidency.

The shooting was also seen by a witness, who spoke to AFP, also on condition of not being named.

The demonstrators were demanding the resignation of interim leader Catherine Samba Panza after the deaths of at least 20 people in Bangui at the weekend.

The resurgence this weekend of violence in Central African Republic was sparked by the murder of a motorcycle-taxi driver in central Bangui's Muslim-majority PK-5 neighbourhood.

After the death of the driver, whose throat was allegedly slit, clashes and looting spread to nearby districts.

( AFP)
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