The United Nations says one of its peacekeepers has been killed in the Central African Republic (CAR).
In a statement on Monday, the U.N. Mission in the country said the victim, from Burundi, was killed while trying to stop an attack by armed militants.
It stated that rebel fighters known as the anti-Balaka launched the attack on the town of Grimari located in the city of Bambarim in Ouaka prefecture.
Mankeur Ndiaye, who heads the UN peacekeeping mission, flayed the attack carried out on U.N. peacekeepers and the city.
He emphasised that any attack on a U.N. peacekeeper could be considered a war crime.
Panic reportedly ensued in the town after they opened fire on the homes of the mayor and sub-prefect, according to the UN.
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It stated that peacekeepers from the UN Mission immediately intervened in a bid to stop the assault, in line with its mandate to protect civilians.
“One of them was fatally injured by the Anti-Balaka, who deliberately opened fire on the peacekeepers”, the mission said.
The statement quoted Ndiaye as calling for the leader of the armed group, Dimitri Ayoloma, and his accomplices to be made to account for their actions.
“This attack on the city of Grimari and the peacekeepers is unacceptable and constitutes a serious crime under the jurisdiction of national and international courts.
“The leader of these armed elements, Dimitri Ayoloma, as well as all the perpetrators and accomplices of the attack will have to answer for their actions before the courts,” he said.
Ndiaye added that any attack targeting the life of a peacekeeper was liable to both national and international prosecution.
Vanguard News Nigeria.