French peacekeepers have engaged with unidentified militants in the Central African Republic. An army spokesman confirmed a number of the gunmen were killed and injured but did not clarify how many.
The intense gun battle lasted three hours with the French using anti-tank guns, mortar fire and air support from fighter jets.
There were no French casualties in the clashes which started after the peacekeepers received intelligence the militants were heading towards Boguila which is 450 kilometres north of the capital Bangui.
It was in Boguila last week that 16 people were killed in a clinic run by the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres. There is speculation the gunmen who engaged with the French were responsible for those killings.
The charity has suspended all but emergency care in the country.