CAR refugee election veto is “a setback to peace"

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Refugees from Central African Republic have been told they can no longer vote in presidential elections later this year. Photo: UNHCR/M.Poletto

A surprise announcement denying nearly 200,000 refugees from Central African Republic (CAR) the right to take part in key elections needs to be reversed if the country is to return to peace, the UN said Tuesday.

Some 460,000 mainly Muslim refugees have sought shelter in countries outside CAR after years of sectarian conflict; 190,000 are believed to be eligible to vote.

Preparations were under way for their participation in presidential elections later this year, only for CAR authorities to announce a U-turn.

Leo Dobbs from the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) told Daniel Johnson that the news "will come as a blow for refugees and be a setback for reconciliation".

Duration: 1'54"

 

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