Conflict & Justice

Ban Ki-moon urges sanctions against lawless factions in Central African Republic


Young Seleka fighters pose on July 25, 2013, at the Bangui firefighters barracks, turned into a Seleka base, in the Central African Republic.



UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is pushing for sanctions against factions within Central African Republic as that country spirals deeper into a bloody conflict.

In a message to the Security Council on Friday, he urged targeted sanctions to answer “a total breakdown of law and order” since the Seleka coalition seized power in March, Agence France-Presse reported.

“This is unacceptable,” Ban said, according to AFP. “The plight of the people of the CAR must be brought to an end. … I call on the Security Council to consider appropriate options, including the adoption of sanctions or the establishment of a panel of experts, to ensure there is no impunity for perpetrators of gross human rights violations.”

CAR has found itself amid a humanitarian crisis, with reports of targeted killings, rape, use of child soldiers and arbitrary arrests and detentions, the secretary general said.

The Security Council is to review the report on Wednesday.

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The UN’s attention comes after an aid organization reported 30 people killed and dumped into a river in the lawless interior of CAR.

Caritas reported on its website that while the capital Bangui is relatively calm, the countryside is gripped by violence. The organization said it’s still searching for further confirmation about the killings, which is said could be as high as 50.

The initial reports come from a fact-finding mission into rural CAR. Caritas also said people there are without proper food, medicine and shelter ahead of the rainy season.

The situation there prompted an official statement from the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands.

ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said the Security Council meeting “is an occasion for governments to show support and demonstrate that CAR has not been forgotten by the international community.”

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