Rebels Take Another Town in C.A.R.

Posted December 23rd, 2012 at 2:50 pm (UTC-5)
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Rebels in the Central African Republic have captured another town after a battle with government forces.

The rebel alliance known as Seleka seized the town of Bambari on Sunday. Witnesses say government forces withdrew after two hours of gunfire.

Bambari, a town of 40,000, sits in the south-central C.A.R., a 400-kilometer drive from the capital, Bangui.

The rebels have now seized at least eight towns since launching an offensive earlier this month.

Seleka is threatening to topple President Francois Bozize, whom it accuses of failing to fully implement a 2007 peace deal.

Last week the group demanded, among other things, that the government free political prisoners and pay rebel soldiers money it had promised if they surrendered their weapons.

The rebels have continued to advance, despite an offer by Chad to host peace talks and demands by the U.N. Security Council to cease hostilities and pull out of captured cities.

Chad, a close ally to Mr. Bozize, has sent troops to the C.A.R. to support his government.