The President of Cameroon today voiced support for the planned new United Nations peacekeeping operation in Chad and the Central African Republic (CAR) and pledged his country’s full cooperation in its deployment.
Known as MINURCAT, the mission will include European Union military forces and aims help alleviate the plight of thousands of people uprooted due to insecurity in Chad, the CAR and neighbouring Sudan.
Paul Biya, the President of Cameroon, a country that shares long borders with both Chad and the CAR, said the situation there “gravely threatens peace and security of these countries, the security and well being of their populations.”
Addressing the General Assembly’s annual high-level debate, he added that the insecurity is transcending borders.
Cameroon supports the planned mission and will “fully cooperate” in its deployment, he said.
Since 2004, eastern Chad has hosted some 240,000 Sudanese refugees in 12 camps who have fled the fighting in Darfur, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The country is also facing a surge in the number of internally displaced persons (IDPs), now totalling more than 170,000. North-eastern CAR is hosting some 2,660 refugees from Darfur.
The Security Council established MINURCAT earlier this week with an initial deployment of 300 police and 50 military liaison officers to support elements of the Chadian police and liaise with other actors in the region to assist refugees and to counter threats to humanitarian activities.
The mission will also monitor the human rights situation in the region, and work with the Governments and civil society of Chad and CAR to promote human rights standards and put an end to the recruitment and use of child soldiers.