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African regional bloc to send 2,000 peacekeepers to CAR


The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) announced Thursday the deployment of 2,000 troops to the Central African Republic in a bid to restore order amid a wave of violence and looting following a March coup.


Regional leaders on Thursday said they would boost their military force in the Central African Republic by 2,000 soldiers, in a bid to restore order as violence and looting plague the country after a March coup.

In a statement issued after a summit hosted by Chad, the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) bloc said the additional troops would assist the transition government "with security as well as restructuring security forces."

Chadian President Idriss Deby said earlier Thursday the current 500-strong multinational peacekeeping force FOMAC was "insufficient to do the job".

"Armed bands loot, hold to ransom and racketeer the population," he added, stating that the Seleka rebel alliance which ousted president Francois Bozize "is an organisation that lacks unity and the initiative of a command (structure)".

The Seleka rebel coalition that seized power in Bangui on March 24 has struggled to establish order in the capital where many residents live in fear of ceaseless looting and other violence.

The heads of state reminded Seleka leader and interim president Michel Djotodia that the transition period was fixed at 18 months, and that neither he nor any members of his government could run in ensuing elections.


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