MOSCOW, March 24 (RIA Novosti) – Fierce fighting continued in Central African Republic’s capital Bangui on Sunday where rebels were seeking to topple President Francois Bozize, Paris-based news channel France 24 reported.
Fighters of the Seleka rebel coalition advanced into Bangui on Saturday, ignoring a call for talks to avoid a “bloodbath”, after the collapse of a two-month-old peace deal in the unstable and deeply poor former French colony.
“Today will be decisive,” France 24 quoted Colonel Djouma Narkoyo, one of the Seleka military commanders, as saying. “We call on our brothers in FACA (the Central African army) to lay down their arms.”
It was not immediately known whether Bozize, who has not been seen since his return from South Africa on Friday, was inside the palace.
Reuters news agency reported, citing local government officials, that rebels in Central African Republic had seized control of the country's riverside capital Bangui on Sunday, forcing President Bozize to flee into neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo.