Central African Republic: EU commends CAR authorities, pledges more support to new leaders

Brussels, Belgium (PANA) - The European Union (EU) has commended Central African Republic authorities, under the leadership of Ms Catherine Samba-Panza, stating that the country "has crossed another milestone" with the peaceful conduct of elections.

In a statement made available to PANA here on Monday, the EU said that the polls, with a significant mobilization of voters, was "a real success for the political transition process and the democratic aspirations of the Central African population in general."

The EU also commended all stakeholders, including the National Authority for Elections (NSA), for their efforts which have strengthened the credibility and transparency of bundled ballots of 14 February 2016.

It has taken note of the announcement of the final results of the presidential election and the first round of legislative elections in CAR, congratulating Mr. Faustin-Archange Touadéra upon his election to the Presidency of the Republic, and welcomed "the responsible attitude shown by Mr Anicet Dologuélé, recognizing the results."

"The EU calls on all parties to recognize the legitimacy of the authorities emerging from the elections. It is now important to finalize the electoral cycle. The organization of the second round of parliamentary elections on time is, in this respect, a decisive step for the completion of the transition in the country," said the statement.

It further noted that upon assuming office, the new authorities resulting from the elections will face many challenges in the service of national reconciliation and reconstruction of the country, the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) of members of armed groups, the consolidation of the state and the security sector reform, the fight against impunity and the establishment of transitional justice, restoring the rule of law and social cohesion, the provision of services social base, restarting the economy and creating employment opportunities and the responsible and sustainable use of natural resources.

"These projects must be conducted in compliance with the principles of good democratic and economic governance, and through a constructive dialogue, in the spirit of the Bangui Forum," the EU stressed, pointing out that the return of refugees and IDPs to their home communities is an essential objective.

The statement went on: "The conduct of all of these actions will contribute to a lasting stabilization of the country and encourage the international community to maintain its commitment to CAR. The EU, which has provided early support, multifaceted and significant in the transition process, is aware of the magnitude of the challenges that remain and stands ready to support the elected authorities in the action they lead to meet them.

"The EU welcomes the commitment of the United Nations Integrated Multidimensional Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) and supports the Sangaris operation that largely contributed to the progress in the peace of the electoral process.

"The action of the MINUSCA, in particular to support the Central African authorities in the conduct of the DDR process, to coordinate international assistance in the security sphere and to help the authorities to develop and implement the reform of the security sector, including through the provision of strategic advice and on vetting, is paramount.

"The EU will continue coordination with the UN and other international partners in this context", the statement indicated, adding that the EU also recalled the vital role of regional actors in stabilization and reconciliation in CAR and urged them to continue these efforts.

In order to contribute to the reform of the Central African Armed Forces (FACA), as part of the comprehensive EU approach in CAR, the European Council approved a Crisis Management Concept for a military mission Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) training, for an initial period of two years, based in Bangui as EUMAM RCA monitoring mission.

The CSDP mission will help to provide the Central African government expert advice, training and operational training in the general context of the reform of the CAR security sector, to benefit the FACA transformation into a professional army, democratically accountable and representative components of the nation.

The Council called on the European External Action Service to continue the operational planning work, to enable the development and deployment of the mission, subject to Council decisions before the end of the mandate of EUMAM RCA .

While taking note of the calmer security situation facing the country, the EU said it "remains concerned about the humanitarian situation in CAR, especially for displaced populations and the isolated."

It underlined the need for the international community to continue to respond to the humanitarian emergency in this crucial time for the country and reiterated its continued commitment and its neutral and impartial humanitarian effort.

The EU also called on all parties to ensure humanitarian organizations and their personnel safe, timely and unimpeded access to all areas, in full compliance with the UN Guiding Principles on humanitarian aid and international humanitarian law, and to enable them to implement their civil protection activities and the delivery of aid.
-0- PANA AR/VAO 14March2016

14 march 2016 14:57:02

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