News / Africa

CAR Interim Leader Vows to Restore Security in Bangui

Central African Republic interim president Alexandre Nguendet gives a speech at the Gendarmerie headquarters in Bangui, Jan. 13, 2014.
Central African Republic interim president Alexandre Nguendet gives a speech at the Gendarmerie headquarters in Bangui, Jan. 13, 2014.
VOA News
The Central African Republic's new interim president says he is taking steps to restore security in the capital, Bangui.

That city has been terrorized by six weeks of political and ethnic violence that has displaced nearly 500,000 residents.

In an interview with VOA French to Africa, Alexandre Nguendet said he met Sunday with local militias which, in his words, agreed to make peace.

Nguendet said he also was creating a task force with police and security forces to restore order. 

"They will neutralize any individual who tries to vandalize.  I swear there will be no gunshot in Bangui within a week," he said. 

  • Soldiers from the AU peacekeeping mission prepare to leave at the end of a speech given by Alexandre Nguendet, the head of Central African Republic's transitional assembly at the Gendarmerie headquarters in Bangui on Jan. 13, 2014.
  • Central African transitional parliament chief Alexandre Nguendet gives a speech in Bangui, Jan. 13, 2014.
  • People react to a speech given by Alexandre Nguendet, the head of Central African Republic's transitional assembly in Bangui, Jan. 13, 2014.
  • French soldiers man a street beside in Bangui, Jan. 12, 2014.
  • An anti-balaka soldier in Ouengo district in Bangui, Jan. 12, 2014.

Nguendet was named interim president after rebel leader-turned-president Michel Djotodia resigned Friday, after failing to stem months of chaos and violence in the CAR.

The head of the United Nations peacekeeping office in Bangui, General Babacar Gaye, said the situation was improving in the city, but there was still more to be done.

"Today, to summarize the situation, hope is within grasp, but not yet in our grasp," he said.

He said there were fewer killings in Bangui than there were in December, but "the hate is still there."

The latest crisis began after mostly Muslim Seleka rebels overthrew President Francois Bozize last March.  Abuses by the rebels triggered the rise of Christian defense groups and a cycle of killings and violence.

The U.N. refugee agency said Monday that the number of people displaced from their homes nationwide has topped 1 million, including 86,000 who have fled to neighboring countries.

VOA's reporter Nick Long is in the CAR capital, Bangui.  He said that according to a report from the U.N. humanitarian agency, living conditions for most of the country's people were growing desperate.

"A great majority of communities are reporting that the number of meals people eat every day has dropped from three to one.  Everywhere people have lost their livelihoods, and everywhere people are saying they don’t have enough seeds for the next planting season.  And there’s a lack of clean drinking water everywhere," he said.

Long said Bangui appeared calm Monday after unrest and looting over the weekend. 

On Sunday, Nguendet appealed for calm while political leaders begin to work out a path toward new elections.  A national transitional council is due to begin the process of selecting a new interim president as early as Tuesday.

The CAR has a long history of unrest since winning independence from France in 1960.

Deployments of French and African troops have not been able to stop the recent unrest, which has left more than 1,000 people dead.

You May Like

Video Snowstorm Sweeps Northeastern US

'This is nothing like we feared it would be,' New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says; he had warned storm could be one of worst in city history More

Millions of Displaced Nigerians Struggle With Daily Existence

Government acknowledges over a million people displaced in 2014 due to fight against Boko Haram insurgency More

Facebook: Internal Error to Blame for Outages

Temporary outage appeared to spill over and temporarily slow or block traffic to other major Internet sites More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visiti
X
Aru Pande
January 26, 2015 9:33 PM
U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video Obama Urges Closer Economic Ties During Historic India Visit

U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States and India must do better to capitalize on untapped potential in their economic relationship - by removing some of the roadblocks to greater trade and investment. As VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports from New Delhi, Obama spoke after participating in India’s Republic Day celebration.
Video

Video US, EU Threaten New Russia Sanctions Over Ukraine

U.S. President Barack Obama has blamed Russia for an attack by Ukrainian separatists that left dozens dead in the port of Mariupol and cast further doubt on the viability of last year’s cease-fire with the Kyiv government. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington.
Video

Video White House Grapples With Yemen Counterterrorism Strategy

Reports say the U.S. has carried out a drone strike on suspected militants in Yemen, the first after President Barack Obama offered reassurances the U.S. is continuing its counterterrorism operations in the country. The future of those operations has been in question following the collapse last week of Yemen’s government. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Kerry Warns Against Violence in Nigeria Election

US Secretary of State John Kerry visited Nigeria Sunday in a show of the level of concern within the U.S. and the international community over next month’s presidential election. Chris Stein reports.
Video

Video Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sides

The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, and even music, are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. VOA’s June Soh met some animal artists at the zoo in Washington. Faith Lapidus narrates.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Saudi, Yemen Developments Are Sudden Complications for Obama

The death of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah and the collapse of Yemen’s government have cast further uncertainty on U.S. efforts to fight militants in the Middle East and also contain Iran’s influence in the region. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports on the new complications facing the Obama administration and its Middle East policy.
Video

Video Progress, Some Areas of Disagreement in Cuba Talks

U.S. and Cuban officials are reporting progress from initial talks in Havana on re-establishing diplomatic ties. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State (for Western Hemisphere Affairs) Roberta Jacobson said while there was agreement on a broad range of issues, there also are some “profound disagreements” between Washington and Havana. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins has the story.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid