Army, rebels clash in CAR town

2010-07-19 14:15

Bangui - Clashes erupted between Central African Republic troops and rebels in the main northern town of Birao on Monday, with the military and the rebels both claiming to have control.

"We took the town of Birao around 04:30 this morning (03:30 GMT). Fighting began around 04:00," the leader of the rebel Convention of Patriots for Justice and Peace (CPJP) Abdoulaye Hissne told AFP.

A Centrafrican military source from Bangui confirmed that there was fighting in Vakaga, near the borders with Chad and Sudan.

"We are involved in an attack since the early hours of this morning. The attackers, who we have not yet identified, directly hit the base of the Centrafrican armed forces in Birao," the source said.