Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) – A mob lynched a Muslim on Friday after he fell off a crowded lorry driving thousands of frightened civilians out of the strife-torn capital of the Central African Republic.
A large convoy of lorries and taxis packed with Muslims fleeing Christian vigilantes headed north from Bangui under a slew of insults from angry residents, locals said.
The mob set on the victim after he fell off one of the lorries and hacked to pieces his body, which still lay by the side of the road by late morning, an AFP photographer saw.
Armed Christian “anti-balaka” fighters tried to attack a second vehicle in the convoy, but they dispersed when troops from an African peacekeeping force, MISCA, fired warning shots.
Muslim Central Africans and foreigners have been fleeing Bangui for several months to escape killings, looting and harassment by armed militias drawn from the Christian majority in the city, in defiance of calls for peace by religious leaders.
The lynching comes just two days after uniformed Central African troops attacked a Muslim right after a military ceremony in Bangui, stabbing and stoning him to death.
UN envoy to the CAR Boubacar Gaye condemned the climate of impunity that allowed “a man to be attacked in broad daylight and his body desecrated.”
Defence Minister Thomas-Theophile Timangoa told the country’s transitional parliament Thursday that a probe had begun into the lynching and that human rights experts had been asked to help.
‘Left to fend for themselves’
Thousands of Muslims have been fleeing Bangui in fear for their lives as they face vengeance attacks from Christian militia in a spiralling cycle of religious violence.
The violence was sparked after the Seleka rebel group installed Michel Djotodia as the country’s first Muslim president in a coup in March 2013.
The farther south the muslim fanatics go in Africa, the more resistance they will meet.