Christians Butchered in the Central African Republic by Muslim Seleka Forces
Paul Joseph Nzeribe, Noriko Watanabe, and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
The nation of the Central African Republic remains on tenterhooks because of ethnic and religious divisions exacerbated by past outside meddling. In the latest massacre, the mainly Muslim movement called Seleka systematically killed at least 26 Christian villagers. Therefore, possible reprisals may occur because the Christian dominated (Indigenous Beliefs represented) anti-Balaka militia often responds to such aggression.
Christians in the Central African Republic don’t seek to be willing victims of Islamist militancy. For example, in Nigeria the Sunni Takfiri Boko Haram and the Sunni Fulani often butcher Christians (Boko Haram also targets Muslims that are deemed to be apostates). This reality led to the emergence of the Christian dominated anti-Balaka because Seleka was intent on ceasing power in this nation and enforcing religious discrimination.
Modern Tokyo Times in 2014 said, “It is equally noticeable that foreign intervention never happened during the period when mainly Christians were being butchered and forced to flee. On the contrary, outside intervention only really began to take hold when it was clear that Seleka was being overrun. Also, with Chad being accused of taking the side of Seleka – and with Chad having favorable relations with France – then it could well be that the anti-Balaka militias prevented a done deal?”
Human Rights Watch reported at the onset that “Armed Seleka commanders and fighters are leaving their bases in Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic, regrouping in northeastern towns, and engaging in a new wave of horrific attacks against civilians. In some cases, Chadian peacekeeping troops have facilitated the movement of armed Seleka leaders complicit in grave abuses.”
This organization further said, “Seleka forces in January 2014 tortured and killed civilians in and around the town of Sibut, where the former rebels have been regrouping, Human Rights Watch said. Seleka forces were able to leave bases to which they had been confined by African Union peacekeepers by using bush roads to circumvent checkpoints or by traveling with Chadian troops in heavily armed convoys.”
Turning the clock to 2016, then not surprisingly Christians and followers of Traditional Beliefs don’t trust the role of outside nations. Indeed, with France and Chad having such cordial relations, then the role of France remains murky.
The Seleka massacre by Muslims against Christians in the village of Ndomete is likely to inflame fresh bouts of hatred. After all, the majority Christian community feels at a loss when it comes to who supported Seleka from the outset, what is the role of Chad and France within the crisis, why did the international community only intervene once anti-Balaka forces began to gain the advantage, and why was Seleka given breathing space in order to regroup and spread fresh mayhem?
Modern Tokyo News is part of the Modern Tokyo Times group
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