General Amadou Toumani Touré of Mali, whom the Secretary-General appointed as his Special Envoy to the Central African Republic earlier this week, will arrive in Bangui over the weekend for urgent talks with President Ange-Felix Patassé and others, in an effort to restore calm to the troubled country.
A UN spokesman said today that the envoy was scheduled to leave Bamako, Mali, on Saturday. "His first stop will be Libreville, Gabon, where we expect him to meet with President Omar Bongo," Fred Eckhard told the press at UN Headquarters in New York. The envoy will arrive in Bangui late Sunday evening or early Monday morning.
General Touré's trip is in response to the continuing violence in the Central African Republic. It is an additional step to Mr. Annan's continued involvement from UN Headquarters in seeking a solution to the current situation, which follows the attempted coup d'état at the end of May. The Secretary-General had condemned that coup attempt in a statement on 29 May.
The envoy will hold discussions aimed at ending the reported fighting in parts of Bangui between forces loyal to the Government and the rebels, and restoring peaceful political dialogue within the framework of respect for the country's democratic institutions.