News / Africa

    CAR Urges UN to Dispatch Peacekeeping Force

    The United Nations Security Council meets regarding the on-going crisis in the Central Africa Republic on March 6, 2014 in New York City.
    The United Nations Security Council meets regarding the on-going crisis in the Central Africa Republic on March 6, 2014 in New York City.
    Margaret Besheer
    The foreign minister of the Central African Republic has asked the U.N. Security Council to quickly send a U.N. peacekeeping force to his country. The minister highlighted the deteriorating conditions in the CAR, and warned his country could be infiltrated by international terrorist groups. .

    Toussaint Kongo-Doudou urged the 15-nation Security Council to quickly authorize a robust peacekeeping force for his country, saying a delay will only cost more lives.
     
    "We need to act now to avoid Central Africa falling more and more into chaos and becoming a potential breeding ground for international terrorism," he said. "This is not far off.”

    He said they have seen elements of the Sudan-based Janjaweed militias already involved in abuses carried out by the predominantly Muslim Seleka rebels.

    He also warned of threats from al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb and said that the Nigerian group Boko Haram is, again, “not far off."

    The minister said his government believes only the United Nations has the necessary assets to put in place a multi-dimensional peacekeeping operation.

    The African Union has some 6,000 peacekeepers in the country, working alongside 2,000 French troops, trying to calm sectarian violence that has killed thousands and displaced nearly one million people.

    The European Union plans to dispatch 1,000 troops in the coming weeks and the U.N. secretary-general has appealed to the international community to send additional reinforcements.

    In a report to the Security Council this week, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recommended the rapid deployment of up to 10,000 U.N. peacekeepers and 1,820 police.

    His peacekeeping chief, Hervé Ladsous, told the council it would take about six months to plan and deploy a U.N. mission, which would have as its main priority the protection of civilians.

    “Of course, we are fully aware this will be challenging environment for a United Nations peacekeeping mission," he said. "Yet we believe that the United Nations is uniquely positioned to deploy and to sustain a multi-dimensional operation with the full range of capacities that are required to address the deep-rooted nature of this complex crisis.”

    The peacekeeping chief said there would be an initial surge in troops and police that would be drawn down as the security environment improves, allowing the U.N. to focus on civilian and state-building activities.  

    But that milestone could be many months away.  U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees António Gutteres and U.N. humanitarian chief Valerie Amos, who made separate visits to the CAR last month, both stressed the dire humanitarian situation.

    They said civilians live in fear of attack and the social fabric of the country is being torn apart.  Amos said the core of the conflict is about power and money, not religion, but it is being played out through religious and ethnic clashes.

    They warned that the longer the conflict continues, the more difficult it will be for the country and the society to recover.  

    Security Council members will now begin discussions about a U.N. peacekeeping force and are expected to authorize one by the end of this month.

    You May Like

    S. African Farmer Goes From 'Voice in the Wilderness' to Sought-After Expert

    Margarest Roberts has authored more than 40 books on subjects like organic farming, urban agriculture, herbs and ‘superfoods'

    Millennial Men Prefer Bucks Over Beauty

    U.S. men aged 18 to 34 say the finances of a potential significant other are more important than her looks

    Multimedia Lebanese Clown Troupe Marks Valentine's Day Amid Stink

    Activists resort to unusual approaches to raise public awareness of country’s ongoing trash crisis

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growthi
    X
    February 10, 2016 5:54 AM
    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growth

    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Civil Rights Pioneer Remembers Struggle for Voting Rights

    February is Black History Month in the United States. The annual, month-long national observance pays tribute to important people and events that shaped the history of African Americans. VOA's Chris Simkins reports how one man fought against discrimination to help millions of blacks obtain the right to vote
    Video

    Video Jordanian Theater Group Stages Anti-Terrorism Message

    The lure of the self-styled “Islamic State” has many parents worried about their children who may be susceptible to the organization’s online propaganda. Dozens of Muslim communities in the Middle East are fighting back -- giving young adults alternatives to violence. One group in Jordan is using dramatic expression a send a family message. Mideast Broadcasting Network correspondent Haider Al Abdali shared this report with VOA. It’s narrated by Bronwyn Benito
    Video

    Video Migrant Crisis Fuels Debate Over Britain’s Future in EU

    The migrant crisis in Europe is fueling the debate in Britain ahead of a referendum on staying in the European Union that may be held this year. Prime Minister David Cameron warns that leaving the EU could lead to thousands more migrants arriving in the country. Meanwhile, tension is rising in Calais, France, where thousands of migrants are living in squalid camps. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Families Flee Aleppo for Kurdish Regions in Syria

    Not all who flee the fighting in Aleppo are trying to cross the border into Turkey. A VOA reporter caught up with several families heading for Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.