LRA Kill Five in Attack on CAR

Five people have been killed in clashes between Ugandan rebels and forces loyal to the government in the Central African Republic.

Regional police officials in the central African republic have been quoted saying that the clashes took place when Lord\'s Resistance Army rebels attacked a village in an area controlled by the Union of Democratic Forces for Unity, a former rebel group which has signed a peace deal with the Bangui government.

The fighting happened near Tiringoulou, the UFDR base in northeastern CAR near the border with Chad and Sudan.

An official at police headquarters in the regional capital Birao said, that Four LRA elements and one UFDR were killed in this clash. He said the former rebel group immediately launched a hunt for surviving LRA members who burned down several houses as they retreated.

The LRA, which has regrouped in CAR after evading a crackdown in neighboring Uganda, has stepped up attacks on local communities in the northeast of the country in recent months.

It twice attacked the town of Ouandda Djalle last month, meeting with stiff resistance, first from residents, and later from UFDR forces. The clashes killed 16 people, including two civilians.

UFDR troops hunting for the LRA rebels later freed 45 people who had been taken hostage by the LRA during three attacks in August targeting villages around the town of Bria, an important mining area, the official said.

Last month, the Human right watch reported that the LRA rebels have kidnapped at least 700 people in attacks in Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central African Republic since February last year.

The fugitive LRA leader has been on the run since December 2008 when regional states launched a hunt to arrest him after he refused to sign a peace deal with Kampala.