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European Union Foreign Ministers Decided to Begin Preparations for Military Mission in Central African Republic

20.01.2014

Today in Brussels, the foreign ministers of the European Union member states discussed the most recent developments in the Central African Republic and approved the preparation of a European Union military mission as well as a crisis management concept.

According to Foreign Minister Urmas Paet, the objective of the planned 6-month European Union mission is above all to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. A UN Security Council resolution, which would provide the legal basis for the possible European Union operation, is reported to come about at the end of January.

“The security as well as humanitarian situation is becoming more complex in the Central African Republic,” said Foreign Minister Paet. He also asserts that Estonia is ready to contribute to stabilising the situation in the Central African Republic militarily as well as with humanitarian aid.

Foreign Minister Paet welcomed the UN Security Council resolution 2127 that was approved in December and which granted a mandate to the African Union’s mission, MISCA (African-led International Support Mission in the Central African Republic), to act in the Central African Republic as well as a mandate to the French forces to support MISCA.

According to Paet, MISCA’s mandate encompasses the protection of civilians, stabilisation of the state, and re-establishment of national authority over its territory. The resolution also envisions the creation of conditions to enable transportation of humanitarian aid and enacts an arms embargo.

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet emphasises that the security situation in the Central African Republic is complicated and the part political, part-religious backdrop of the conflict has by now affected the country entire population of 4.6 million people, who lack access to healthcare and suffer from malnutrition. The violence has caused more than 1,000 casualties, the amount of internally displaced people has reached 1 million, and nearly 90,000 have fled to neighbouring countries.

There will also be a humanitarian-themed meeting about the Central African Republic in Brussels today which will be organised by EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response Kristalina Giorgieva and UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Valerie Amos. At the same time, there will be a special session of the UN Human Rights Council and a conference for donors will be organised by the African Union in Addis Ababa in February. In 2013, the European Union allocated 20 million Euros to the Central African Republic and a further 650,000 Euros through the United Nations Humanitarian Aid Service (UNHAS).

 

More info:
Marika Post
Spokesperson
Permanent Representation of Estonia to the European Union
+32 474 981 657

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