France doubling troops in Central African Republic

Associated Press
View photos
Seleka soldiers patrol in Bangui, Central African Republic, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013 following a day-long gun battle between Seleka soldiers and Christian militias. Fighting came to the capital of Central African Republic on Thursday, leaving dozens of casualties and posing the biggest threat yet to the new government just as the U.N. Security Council authorized an intervention force to prevent a bloodbath between Christians and Muslims. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

PARIS (AP) — French President Francois Hollande says the country could double the number of troops on the ground in the Central African Republic within hours.

Speaking from the Elysee Palace, Hollande said Thursday that the 600 hundred troops in the country will be doubled "within a few days, even a few hours."

The French leader says he "decided to act immediately" on a day where violence has claimed an estimated 98 lives.

Hollande says the Central African Republic was "calling us for help."

Armed Christian fighters who support the country's exiled president assaulted the capital at with rifles and machetes, leaving dozens dead and plunging Bangui into further chaos.