The French Defense minister says his country is ending its military peacekeeping mission in Central African Republic.

Jean-Yves Le Drian, in the capital, Bangui, Monday to mark the end of France's nearly three-year mission to help stabilize the country, said that some French troops would remain in Central African Republic as part of the U.N. peacekeeping mission.

Le Drian met with President Faustin Archange Touadera and addressed the country's parliament.

The withdrawal of the French force, which at its peak was estimated at 2,000 troops, comes when there has been a new outbreak of violence in Central African Republic. The U.N. peacekeeping mission said that 25 people were killed last week in clashes between armed groups amid "rising tension" in parts of the long-turbulent country.