Rebels in Central African Republic take 2 more northern towns

The Associated Press

BANGUI, Central African Republic - Officials confirm that a rebel coalition has taken two more towns in the north of the Central African Republic, including the mining hub of Bria, bringing to five the number of towns the nascent rebellion has seized in two weeks.

The mayor of Bria, Moussa Gounman, said the soldiers from the rebel coalition calling itself Seleka invaded the town at 4 a.m. Tuesday.

"They are now the masters of the military base in Bria," said Gounman.

Seleka is a new alliance consisting of a trio of rebel groups, including fighters from the Union of Democratic Forces for Unity, which signed a 2007 peace deal with the government. Last week they took the towns of Ndele, Sam-Ouandja and Ouadda and Bamingui, before proceeding to Bria on Tuesday.