French FM in Bangui to attend president inauguration

French FM Laurent Fabius will attend the inauguration of new CAR president.

French FM in Bangui to attend president inauguration

World Bulletin / News Desk

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius arrived in Bangui on Thursday to attend the inauguration of newly elected interim president of the Central African Republic (CAR) Catherine Samba-Panza.

"Fabius has just landed," a Bangui airport official told Anadolu Agency, requesting anonymity.

Many high-profile foreign dignitaries are expected to attend the ceremony.

"We are still waiting for President of Congo-Brazzaville Denis Sassou Nguesso, Chadian Foreign Minister Mousa Faki Mahamat and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) foreign minister," she added.

She said security had been stepped up along the road from the airport to the National Assembly building where the inauguration will take place.

On Monday, Samba-Panza, mayor of Bangui, was elected as interim president by the National Transitional Council, CAR's transitional parliament.

She replaces Michel Djotodia, the country's first Muslim president since its independence from France in 1960, who stepped down earlier this month under international and regional pressure.

CAR, a mineral-rich, landlocked country, descended into anarchy in March when Seleka rebels – said to be mostly Muslim – ousted Christian president François Bozize, who had come to power in a 2003 coup.

For months, the country has been plagued by tit-for-tat sectarian violence between the anti-balaka and former seleka fighters.

Last Mod: 23 Ocak 2014, 16:10
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