Nigeria is repatriating more than 1,600 citizens who have gathered in its embassy in the Central African Republic’s capital Bangui, as the violence continues in the country.
“The Federal Government has ... arranged several chartered flights to bring home over 1,620 Nigerians who took refuge at the Nigerian Embassy in Bangui,” Chris Olukolade, a spokesman for the Nigerian army, said in a statement issued on Sunday.
The statement added that evacuation operation started on Friday and half of the Nigerian nationals have been brought home.
The government of Mali was scheduled to evacuate some 500 of its citizens by two flights on Sunday.
Over 100 of Niger's citizens left the restive country for the capital Niamey, on Friday night.
The Central African Republic’s immediate northern neighbor, Chad, has already sent 12,000 of its citizens home through land and air while Senegal repatriated over 200 of its nationals earlier this week.
The Central African Republic spiraled into chaos in March last year when Seleka fighters overthrew President Francois Bozizé and brought Michel Djotodia to power. Bozizé fled the country after his ouster.
On September 13, 2013, Djotodia dissolved the Seleka coalition. Some of the rebels later joined the country’s regular army while some defied.
France invaded the Central African Republic on December 5, 2013, after the UN Security Council adopted a resolution giving the African Union and Paris the go-ahead to send troops to the country.
France has currently 1,600 troops in the African country, claiming that the aim of the mission is to create stability in the Central African Republic in order to allow humanitarian aid to reach violence-hit areas.
There are many mineral resources, including gold and diamond, in the Central African Republic.