Khartoum Peace Agreement Car

As the Central African Republic (CAR) celebrates tomorrow the first anniversary of the Khartoum peace agreement, signed between the government and 14 armed groups, Alice Banens, Amnesty International`s legal adviser, said that six years after seleka took over from Bangui, causing the worst bloodbath the country has ever seen, much of the Central African Republic continues to suffer from violence by armed groups. So far, neither the national armed forces nor the UN peacekeeping mission have managed to contain them. The agreement of 6 February had the merit of drawing attention to the crisis and ensuring that international actors are on the same side. However, implementation requires sustained commitment from the government and its international partners. Debates about who is the strongest and most competent to lead the country have begun to replace any spirit of complacency and power-sharing that influenced the signing of the peace agreement. Political maneuvers in the capital are unlikely to help address the causes of rebellion in the centralized Republic, historically stemming from the marginalized peripheries of the state. Many international observers wondered why the government had not diverted a high-level delegation to quell the escalation of violence in Birao. The USMS joint units, composed of armed group fighters and Central African state forces, were one of the most important security structures set up by the 2019 peace agreement. These units are expected to be transitional (24 months of intervention), composed of 60% rebels and 40% government soldiers (nearly 2,000 participants in total), with the aim of building trust and protection, strengthening public order and securing seasonal migration corridors. The recent agreement to end a seven-year conflict in one of Africa`s poorest countries is largely at a standstill, but peace remains a possibility.

Responsibility for the implementation of the agreement lies with different bodies. The agreement mandates members of the Organ of African Mediators – the AU; the subregional groups (as permanent members of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), as well as Angola, the Republic of the Congo, Gabon and Chad, in order to “verify the implementation of the agreement by the parties”. The negotiations for this agreement were based on the experience of previous failures. This time, the mediation team, led by the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), spent a year with armed groups, civil society and the government of the Central African Republic to reach a common understanding of the problems and abuses and define the conditions for dialogue. Finally, the agreement creates special mixed security units, probably its main innovation. These should have been put in place within too short a period of 60 days from the date of signature and should initially last two years. Nevertheless, the EU, the UN and the AU are still working to set them up and finance them; In early June, the main stumbling blocks was that some armed groups had not provided their lists of fighters to join the groups, or had produced incomplete or inflated lists. [fn] Crisis Group interview, diplomat, Bangui, May 2019.See footnote Units should include both members of armed groups and the national armed forces under their command.

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