Christians and Muslims clash in Central African Republic (CAR) kills 37 and injured 20,000 as France, Russia wage diplomatic warfare.

Deadly clashes in the Central African Republic (CAR) town of Alindao left at least 37 people dead, as 20,000 people were injured even as global powers, France, Russia and the United States waged diplomatic battles over the strategy to end the conflict.

The United Nations on Friday said 37 people had been killed, while up to 20,000 were affected, during clashes between Christian and Muslim-dominated militias that saw a church torched in the latest surge of sectarian violence.

Church sources had previously said a priest was killed in the violence, which sparked on Thursday in the central town of Alindao when Christian militiamen, known as anti-balaka, killed Muslims prompting revenge attacks.

UN humanitarian coordinator in the C.A.R Najat Rochdi, said “This vicious cycle of repeated attacks against civilians is unacceptable. Civilians want security, peace and a future,”

Alindao is a stronghold of the Union for Peace in CAR (UPC) Muslim militia that has its roots in the Seleka group. It has witnessed chronic fighting in recent months that has also killed two UN soldiers and a humanitarian aid worker.

It lies on a critical route traversing the south and east of the country and is in the heart of a region numerous gold and diamond mines that have helped fuel the conflict.

In September, the UN warned of a “disastrous” humanitarian situation in the region, which it said was under the control of armed groups.