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By Emmanuel Braun BANGUI (Reuters) - French troops in Central African Republic clashed with gunmen in the capital Bangui on Monday as they searched for weapons in an operation to disarm rival Muslim and Christian fighters responsible for hundreds of killings since last week. France said it was prepared to use force if fighters rejected calls to disarm or return to barracks. France boosted its military presence in its former colony to 1,600 troops over the weekend as waves of religious violence swept across the country. At least 459 people have been killed in Bangui alone since Thursday, according to Red Cross officials.