The following statement by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was issued today:
I am shocked to the core by the latest allegations of abuse by international forces in the Central African Republic. Our focus must be on the victims and their families. We are talking about women and young children who have been traumatized in the worst imaginable way.
Yesterday, the Central African Republic inaugurated a new democratically elected President, marking the end of a transition period. The interventions of the international community helped save the Central African Republic from an unspeakable fate. Yet, we must face the fact that a number of troops who were sent to protect people instead acted with hearts of darkness.
These crimes only fester in silence. That is why the United Nations is shining a spotlight on these despicable, depraved and deeply disturbing allegations. I will continue to be unrelenting in confronting this scourge and raising it proactively at every opportunity. This constant and loud advocacy must be matched by the actions of Member States who alone have the power to discipline their forces with consequences. This is essential to restoring trust in the invaluable institution of peacekeeping and — even more importantly — to provide a full measure of justice and healing to the affected communities.