Bangui, Jan 1: Two children were beheaded in the Central African Republic’s (CAR) capital as violence touched a “vicious new low”, the UN has said.
About 16 children had been killed in Bangui since Dec 5 and an increasing number of them are being recruited into armed groups, BBC reported citing the UN.
There were “unprecedented levels” of violence against children, the UN children’s agency, Unicef, said in a statement. One of the children who had been beheaded had also been mutilated, while another 60 had been injured in fighting since Dec 5.
“More and more children are being recruited into armed groups, and they are also being directly targeted in atrocious revenge attacks,” said Souleymane Diabate, Unicef’s CAR representative.
The violence has mostly pitted Christian and Muslim militias against each other.
According to the UN, children are being directly targeted in revenge attacks.
The CAR is ruled by Muslim ex-rebel leader Michel Djotodia, who seized power in March forcing then-President Francois Bozize, who came from the majority Christian population, to flee into exile.
About 1,000 people have been killed in tit-for-tat clashes in Bangui in December.