European Union to join operation in Central African Republic

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Security Council Chamber

The European Union has been given the go-ahead to join African Union and French forces to help bring peace to the Central African Republic.

The Security Council on Tuesday adopted a resolution authorizing the deployment of the operation.

The Central African Republic is in the grips of a conflict between Muslim and Christian communities.

Ambassador Gerard Araud of France said although the situation is stable, it remains tense.

"So we really do need the arrival of the European forces because our contingent for the moment has been largely committed to the protection of the 100,000 IDPs who have taken refuge at the airport. So the European Union will protect these people and will allow the French forces to deploy more strongly to the city of Bangui. We have only 1,900 soldiers to the City of Bangui and beyond Bangui to the rest of the country." (29")

Ambassador Araud said contingents of African peacekeepers continue to arrive in the Central African Republic, the latest one, a battalion from Rwanda.

He pointed out that the Security Council resolution is reinforcing the UN Office in the country so that it can provide increased support to the transitional authority.

Ambassador Araud added that the resolution is also "sending a clear message to those who threaten the political process or commit violence" as it enables the UN to impose sanctions on them.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations

Duration:  1’33″


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