STATEMENT

January 15, 2021

The President of the Commission of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), His Excellency Ambassador Gilberto Da Piedade VERISSIMO, followed with great dismay and indignation the simultaneous attacks by the armed groups of the “Coalition of Patriots for Change ”(CPC), on January 13, 2021 against the city of Bangui, and which resulted, among other things, in one death and one wounded in the ranks of the peacekeepers of the Rwandan contingent of the Multidimensional Integrated Mission of Nations for Stabilization in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA).

The President of the ECCAS Commission strongly condemns these attacks which violate the commitments made under the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement of February 6, 2019 and mark a setback with regard to efforts to consolidate democracy and peace. Ongoing in the Central African Republic (CAR) since the end of the 2016 electoral cycle.

While bowing to the memory of the valiant peacekeeper who heroically fell on the field of honor, saluting the courage of the wounded one in defending the right of the Central African people to live in freedom and peace, and wishing them a speedy recovery, he presents, on behalf of the whole community, his sincere condolences to MINUSCA, the Rwandan Government and the bereaved family.

He reminds the leaders of the armed groups united within the CPC and their political sponsors of their individual responsibility with regard to the consequences of their acts vis-à-vis international law, in accordance with the Declaration of the Conference of Heads of State and Government of ECCAS on the situation in CAR of December 26, 2020.

The President of the ECCAS Commission takes this sad opportunity to recall the imperative need for the principle of the peaceful resolution of disputes enshrined in international law and once again calls on all the Central African parties to put an end without delay to hostilities and the violence they generate, in order to engage resolutely in a constructive and saving political dialogue for the CAR, for which the community organization vouches and which it is committed to facilitating.

JANUARY 15, 2021