Central African Republic President says country ‘remains fragile’, despite progress on peace deal

25 September 2019

President Faustin-Archange Touadéra of the Central African Republic (CAR), addressing the UN General Assembly’s annual general debate, spotlighted “modest but sure” progress in implementing the landmark peace agreement signed by his Government and 14 armed groups on 6 February 2019.

“We are mobilized for the implementation of this Agreement, with the support of the guarantors [African Union and the Economic Community of Central African States] and the Facilitators, foremost among which are the United Nations. through the [UN integrated peacekeeping mission in the country, known as MINUSCA],” he told UN Member countries.

“With the support of all our partners in the subregion and around the world, we are making progress, albeit modest, but sure, in extending State authority throughout the country, as well as on national security and defense reforms,” he said.

This, he explained, would facilitate the gradual redeployment of the Defense and Security Forces and the continuation of the national disarmament, demobilization, reintegration and repatriation programme, known as DDRR, already underway.

Mr. Touadéra also noted the recent launch of development programmes as a demonstration that early peace dividends from the deal are a reality.

At the same time, he acknowledged that much remained to be done, as the situation in CAR “remains fragile.”

“Armed groups continue to supply war materials and ammunition illegally, [and are] guilty of massive and repeated violations of international humanitarian and human rights law," he said, adding: “But, as you know, only the legal and legitimate forces of the CAR are embargoed, depriving the State of the means to fulfill its mission of protecting the citizens and the territory.”

While President Touadéra welcomed the UN Security Council’s decision to ease the arms embargo regarding the defense and security forces, had called for a total lifting of the measures to allow the State to extend its authority over the entire national territory, with a view to protecting the civilian population

Indeed, he said that all the conditions set out by the relevant Council Sanctions Committee had been met, in addition to significant progress towards reforming the defense and security sectors.

“To overcome the crisis that has shaken my country, and in line with the theme of our session, I call for a multilateral, dynamic, concerted, coherent and coordinated," he stated, adding that he hoped the international community would remain mobilized alongside the people and the Government of the CAR.

 

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