|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Communiqué on High-Level Meeting on Central African Republic
On 26 September 2014, the United Nations Secretary-General convened a high-level meeting on the Central African Republic. The meeting was attended by the Republic of Angola, Republic of Benin, Republic of Burundi, Republic of Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of Chad, People’s Republic of China, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, French Republic, Gabonese Republic, Kingdom of Morocco, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Russian Federation, Republic of Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Sao Tome and Principe, United Kingdom, United States, African Development Bank, African Union, Economic Community of Central African States, European Union, International Monetary Fund, Islamic Development Bank, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie and the World Bank.
The meeting was an opportunity for key stakeholders to reaffirm their commitment to the Central African Republic and the restoration of peace and stability in the country. Participants expressed the hope that the momentum created by the signing of the Cessation of Hostilities agreement in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo, on 23 July 2014, the appointment of a new Government on 24 August 2014 and the transfer of authority from the African-led International Support Mission to the Central African Republic (MISCA) to the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) on 15 September would lead to further progress. The meeting also encouraged the Transitional Authorities to adopt and implement, without delay, with the support of international partners, including the Peacebuilding Commission and its Central African Republic country specific configuration, the measures necessary for the successful completion of the Transition, in order for the Central African Republic to forge a path towards peace, stability, national dialogue and reconciliation, and development.
While welcoming the significant reduction in violence in the Central African Republic, particularly in Bangui, as a result of the deployment of MISCA supported by the French Sangaris force and the European Union Force (EUFOR-CAR), participants expressed serious concern regarding the continued violence and attacks on civilian populations and aid workers in certain parts of the country, as well as the ongoing human rights violations and violations of international humanitarian law.
They called on the signatories of the Cessation of Hostilities agreement to fully commit, in good faith, to the spirit and letter of the agreement, including through their active participation in the follow-up monitoring mechanisms at the national and local levels, and recalled that individuals and entities who act to undermine the peace, stability and security are subject to targeted measures under Security Council resolution 2134 (2014). Participants expressed their support for the implementation of the Agreement, in particular the envisaged regrouping of combatants as a first step to disarmament, for which the primary responsibility lies with the Central African authorities. Participants also called on the Transitional Authorities to protect civilians through concrete steps towards restoring State authority and ending impunity with the support of the United Nations.
Participants welcomed the collaboration between the African Union and the United Nations that enabled a successful transfer of authority from MISCA to MINUSCA. They expressed their deep appreciation for the important role played by the region, including through the successive deployments of the Multinational Force of Central Africa (FOMAC), the Multinational Force in the Central African Republic (FOMUC), the Mission for the consolidation of peace in Central African Republic (MICOPAX) and then MISCA, and paid tribute to those who have lost their lives in the service of peace. Participants welcomed the rehatting of MISCA contingents into MINUSCA. They stressed the need to fully deploy the military, police and civilian components of MINUSCA, as soon as possible, and called on relevant Member States to support this deployment, including through the provision of key remaining enablers. Participants underlined the importance of the full implementation of Security Council resolution 2149 (2014), which prioritizes the protection of civilians, supporting the political process and the restoration of State authority.
Participants underlined the key role played by the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the Central African States throughout these years to support peace and security in the Central African Republic. They welcomed the essential role played by the International Mediator, H.E. Mr. Denis Sassou Nguesso, President of the Republic of the Congo, with the support of the African Union and the United Nations, and together with leaders of the region, and invited them to continue their support to the Transition.
Participants agreed that achieving a lasting solution in the Central African Republic requires the commitment of all Central Africans to an inclusive political process. They urged all Central Africans, in particular members of armed groups, to refrain from violence and from all acts that could further undermine national cohesion and territorial integrity, and to resolve their differences through peaceful means including inter-faith/inter-communal dialogue. Participants also called on the Transitional Authorities to move quickly to organize and hold consultations at the local level, as called for in the Brazzaville Agreement, to give Central Africans throughout the country, and those who have sought refuge in neighbouring countries, an avenue to express their views on the challenges facing the country. They underscored the need for these consultations to contribute to a broad-based political agreement on governance reforms, including security sector reform, the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of former combatants, rebuilding of social cohesion and peaceful inter-community cohabitation, re-establishment of the rule of law and fight against impunity, regionally balanced social economic development, and access to social services. Participants encouraged the Transitional Authorities to immediately accelerate preparations in order to hold free, fair, transparent and inclusive presidential and legislative elections, scheduled for February 2015, to be held as soon as possible. They encouraged all Heads of State and Government and donors to support these processes led by the Central African authorities.
Participants expressed their deep concern regarding the precarious humanitarian situation, the plight of the civilian population, in particular women and children exposed to violence and abuses, the thousands of children associated with armed groups, and the impending food security crisis. They noted reports
from humanitarian partners that more than 2.5 million people out of a population of 4.6 million depend on humanitarian assistance. Participants noted with concerns the shortfalls in humanitarian funding, and urged donors to fulfil their pledges for humanitarian assistance in the Central African Republic and its neighbouring countries. They commended the efforts of neighbouring countries to assist refugees from the Central African Republic. Participants also encouraged development partners and financial institutions to identify funding modalities to contribute to humanitarian, protection and resilience actions.
Participants reiterated the need to strengthen justice institutions and to fight impunity, and called on the Central African authorities to take concrete steps, without delay, including adopting the necessary legislation for a special criminal court in support of the urgent temporary measures mentioned in Security Council resolution 2149 (2014) as a matter of priority, to hold perpetrators of human rights violations and violations of international humanitarian law to account and to promote national healing and national reconciliation with the support of the international community. They called on the Transitional Authorities to pursue their efforts to redeploy State administration in the provinces, including through the restoration of the effective administration of the judiciary and the criminal justice system throughout the country.
Participants agreed that the restoration of security should go hand in hand with a commitment by the international community to support the rebuilding of the State and economic recovery. Participants underscored the importance of supporting the Central African authorities to implement early recovery plans and revitalize the economy. They underscored the need to strengthen public financial management and transparency, and accountability, including in a manner that targets the collection of fiscal and customs revenues, expenditure controls, public procurement and concession practice, and in this regard strongly recommended an efficient partnership initiative in line with Security Council resolution 2149 (2014) between the Central African authorities and the international community to extend State authority and assist on critical governance issues. The sustained efforts of the Central African authorities in implementing the road map of actions in line with Security Council resolution 2149 (2014) would also help to create a conducive environment for the international community to provide budget support in 2015 and could be accompanied by a donor conference in due time to make the transition a success. In this regard, participants encouraged development partners and International Financial Institutions to remain actively engaged to cover financial gaps in the short and long run, and address multidimensional needs of the Central African Republic, helping the country to stabilize and recover.
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