The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the heinous and cowardly attack against education workers near Markounda in the north‑western part of the Central African Republic (Ouham prefecture) on 25 February 2018 by unknown assailants, which resulted in the killing of one United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) education consultant, two officials of the Ministry of Education of the Central African Republic and three members of a UNICEF national partner organization, Bangui Sans Frontières.
The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest condolences and sympathy to the families of the victims and to the Government of the Central African Republic.
The members of the Security Council were appalled that these education workers were killed while traveling to provide training for community teachers who were to start teaching in temporary learning spaces set up by UNICEF and partners for 2,000 crisis‑affected children in Markounda, and they recalled the importance of ensuring that children continue to have access to basic services during the conflict and post‑conflict periods, including, inter alia, education.
The members of the Security Council expressed concern at the ongoing clashes between armed groups in the Central African Republic and the attacks against civilians, in particular those perpetrated on a communal basis, United Nations peacekeepers, and humanitarian workers, as well as incitement to ethnic and religious hatred and violence, which continue to destabilize the country and cause heavy civilian casualties and significant population displacements despite agreement by parties to the conflict to an immediate cessation of hostilities. The members of the Security Council reiterated the urgent and imperative need to hold accountable all perpetrators of human rights violations and abuses and international humanitarian law violations, irrespective of their status or political affiliation. They demanded that all armed groups lay down their arms and engage constructively in the peace process immediately and unconditionally. They recalled that planning, directing, sponsoring or conducting attacks against humanitarian personnel now constitute a basis for sanctions designations pursuant to resolution 2399 (2018).
The members of the Security Council expressed their deep concern for the humanitarian situation in the Central African Republic, including the unprecedented numbers of more than 545,000 refugees and 688,000 internally displaced persons, where half of the population is in need of humanitarian assistance. They reiterated their demand that all parties allow and facilitate the full, safe, immediate and unhindered access for the timely delivery of humanitarian assistance to populations in need. They encouraged Member States to scale up funding to respond urgently to the humanitarian needs in the country.
The members of the Security Council paid tribute to all Central African and international actors working to bring peace and stability in the Central African Republic. They reiterated their determination to support peace, stability and development in the Central African Republic.