New York

13 November 2017

Note to Correspondents on the Central African Republic

The Department of Peacekeeping Operations today announced the appointment of Brigadier-General (retired) Fernand Marcel Amoussou (Benin) to lead an independent special investigation into a number of recent incidents in the south-east of the Central African Republic that occurred between 1 May and 31 August 2017.

The investigation will look into attacks against civilians by armed groups that occurred in close proximity to a presence of the UN Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) in Haute-Kotto, Basse-Kotto, Mbomou, and Haut-Mbomou prefectures as well as the Mission’s response to these incidents. 
The Department of Peacekeeping Operations is launching this special investigation in light of the recent deterioration of the security situation in the south-east of the country and with a view to improving the Mission’s ability to prevent violence and protect civilians under imminent threat within its capabilities and areas of deployment. The investigation will make recommendations to address any shortcomings, if applicable, and on the Mission’s overall performance with regard to the protection of civilians, in the context of MINUSCA’s mandate renewal.  
The investigation team will deploy to the Central African Republic from 14 to 28 November.  A final report will then be presented to the Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, the findings of which will be made public. 
General (retired) Fernand Marcel Amoussou was the Force Commander of the UN Mission in Cote d’Ivoire (UNOCI) from 2006-2010. He was the Chief of General Defence Staff of the Benin armed forces from 2000-2005 and was instrumental in operationalizing the first all-female military school of Benin. He has worked with the Africa Centre for Strategic Studies in the United States and is currently Director of the Institute for Security in Africa.