Security Council Press Statement on the Central African Republic
(as issued today by Security Council President Ambassador Peter Wittig)
The members of the Security Council take note of the report of the Secretary-General on the situation in the Central African Republic and on the activities of the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in that country (BINUCA) dated 16 May 2011 (S/2011/311).
The members of the Council acknowledge the efforts made by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and the authorities of the Central African Republic to organize peaceful presidential and legislative elections. They note that the near absence of a political opposition in the democratic institutions of the Central African Republic since the elections may constitute a considerable challenge to the process of national reconciliation and nation building. In this regard, the members of the Council encourage the Government to take the necessary measures to address irregularities experienced in the electoral process in order to ensure the improved conduct of the municipal and subsequent elections.
The members of the Council stress the need for all parties to take firm commitments to implement the recommendations of the inclusive political dialogue and work towards national reconciliation. In this respect, the members of the Council welcome the engagement of the new Government, as expressed by the Prime Minister in his inaugural declaration on 19 May 2011 and during the Round Table of the Partners of the Central African Republic in Brussels on 17 June 2011, to fight corruption, improve governance and the rule of law, reform the Electoral Code and establish a Permanent Technical Secretariat to consolidate and build technical capacity for the holding of future elections.
The members of the Council welcome the announcement by President Bozize on 25 June 2011 to move forward the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration process in order to contribute to stability in the country. They call on all parties to engage to ensure the effective implementation of this process, and for it to occur in full transparency and in coordination with the international community, especially in the framework of the DDR Steering Committee.
The members of the Council welcome the cease-fire agreement signed between the government and the Convention of Patriots for Justice and Peace (CPJP) on 12 June 2011 and continued progress toward a full reconciliation. The members also call on concerned states to assist in the speedy departure from the Central African Republic territory of the Popular Front for Redress (FPR) and other non-Central African fighters.
The members of the Council remain concerned by the security situation in the North and in the East of the Central African Republic, which remains precarious. They stress the importance of the work of international partners to enhance the capacity of the Central African Armed Forces (FACA) in support of the wider security reform process. They welcome the signature of the Tripartite Agreement signed by the Central African Republic, Chad and Sudan on 23 May 2011 in Khartoum.
The members of the Council take note of the respective initiatives undertaken by the United Nations and African Union to facilitate regional action against the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and to protect civilians, especially women and children, and reiterate the need to enhance cooperation of all relevant parties, including information sharing and coordination of military operations, to help address the threats to civilians posed by the LRA.
The members of the Council remain concerned by the dire humanitarian situation and call upon all parties to respect their obligations under the international humanitarian law. They underline the importance of continuing to ensure the security of refugees, internal displaced persons and humanitarian personnel before a political solution to security concerns in the region can make their voluntary return possible. They encourage the Central African authorities and the politico-military groups to play an active role in the prevention of human rights abuses, including inter alia, by implementing the recommendations of the Security Council’s Working Group for Children in Armed Conflict.
The members of the Council pay tribute to Ms. Sahle-Work Zewde, former Special Representative of the Secretary-General, for her action in support of consolidating peace and fostering political dialogue in the Central African Republic and welcome the appointment of Ms. Margaret Vogt as new Special Representative of the Secretary General in the Central African Republic and head of the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in the Central African Republic (BINUCA). They also encourage the Central African Republic Configuration of the Peacebuilding Commission to continue coordinating the efforts of the international community around peacebuilding priorities and mobilizing resources to address these priorities, and note that the recent Round Table of the Partners of the Central African held in Brussels on 17 June was a welcomed step in this regard.