Central African Republic : AU’s and UN’s troubled role at peace talks between government and armed groups in Khartoum

Jean Pierre Lacroix of the UN and Ismail Chergui of the AU. Photo: Fridolin Ngoulou / ADV


NEWSROOM (ADV) – Peace talks between the Central African government and armed groups come at a crucial moment. Except that according to information obtained by ADV, the role of the African Union and the United Nations is likely to undermine this dialogue.

A week of dialogue that brings together the 14 armed groups of the country and the Central African government, under the aegis of the African Union with the support of the UN, the demands of the armed groups demanding amnesty and the government of national unity still block the progress of the process, especially with a troubled role of these institutions.

A source from an armed group regrets the attitude of these institutions, “first, it is them who proposed the draft agreement that does not take into account our claims formulated and harmonized for several months. That is why we had suspended the talks to compile our demands in six points, including the amnesty, the national unity government, the prime minister, the status of the leaders of the armed groups, the redefinition of the disarmament coordination committees and the transformation of armed groups into self-defense pending demobilization,” said this source.

For the source, the African Union and the United Nations, instead of playing their role of facilitator and technical support body, get involved in the debates in order to create tension. “The dialogue is between the armed groups and the government. We find that the AU wants to take the place of the government to decide. It is inadmissible this troubled game that will push us to leave the process,” he said.

The draft agreement, proposed by the AU does not touch the problem of substance. For an observer, if by chance the armed groups sign this agreement, the problem of CAR will only be partially addressed. “The will to turn the page is visible between the stakeholders. But we observe that the AU and the UN do not want the substantive issues to be addressed, nor let the government take responsibility for deciding the future of its people, “said the observer.

“At the pace things are going, armed groups may slam the door and maintain their positions in the country. And the ordeal of the people will not end,” said the observer well informed of the current situation of the talks.

Indiscretions transmitted to ADV indicate that the AU and the UN would be won by the fear of letting go of the amnesty, presented as a main condition of the signing of this agreement and the ceasefire in the country.

The amnesty will not be decreed, as emphasized a political adviser of the president of the Republic, but according to him the file will pass by the Assembly and by the referendum. But the amnesty will not prevent the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the Special Criminal Court (CPS) from prosecuting serious crimes committed in the country.

For nearly two years, the AU has been preparing this dialogue, the culmination of which must give a new lease of life to the people of Central Africa.

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