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Updated: 04/27/2014 01:56:13PM

1200 Muslims leave C. African Republic capital

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The Associated Press

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BANGUI, Central African Republic (AP) — Heavily armed African and French peacekeepers have escorted some of the last remaining Muslims out of Central African Republic’s volatile capital after months of sectarian violence.

More than 1,200 Muslims who had sought refuge in Bangui’s PK12 neighborhood back in January began clambering onto transport trucks just after dawn Sunday.

The convoy is taking the Muslims to two towns in the country’s far north along the border with Chad.

Within minutes of their departure, Associated Press journalists witnessed a scene of total anarchy in PK12 as bystanders surged toward the mosque and immediately began desecrating it.

Crowds shouted “The Muslims are gone! The Muslims are gone!” as they stripped the mosque of its ceiling fans and the loudspeaker that had been used for the call to prayer.

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