Meeting today with Faustin Archange Touadéra, President of the Central African Republic (CAR), United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted that the country had turned a corner following the holding of democratic elections, and welcomed the leader’s resolve to fully address the root causes of the country’s crisis in an inclusive spirit. According to a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban met in New York today with President Touadéra to discuss the situation in the CAR, including the President’s dialogue with representatives of the armed groups.
“[The Secretary-General] welcomed the President’s outreach to the armed groups and his vision for a comprehensive process to address the underlying reasons that had driven them to take up arms,” said that statement, adding that the UN chief also welcomed the resolve of the President and his Government to pursue this process in a spirit of national reconciliation and inclusiveness, guided by the principles and recommendations of the Bangui Forum.
Lords Resistance Army rebels have kidnapped 17 people from a village in eastern Central African Republic, a senior local official said on Thursday. The rebels are notorious for mutilating civilians and kidnapping children for use as fighters. The International Criminal Court has issued arrest warrants for the LRA’s messianic leader, Joseph Kony, and other senior commanders.
The rebels struck on Monday, snatching three people in the morning and forcing them to carry their goods before releasing them in the evening, said Ghislain Kolengo, prefect of Haut Mbomou region.
“Very early (on Tuesday), they attacked Kadjema village and kidnapped 17 people who are still in captivity. I hope that our forces in the area and the Ugandans will find these people and bring them back,” Kolengo told Reuters.