Germany to send up to 80 soldiers to C. African Republic

Berlin’s support to EU’s military mission in the Central African Republic will focus on air transport support.

Germany to send up to 80 soldiers to C. African Republic

World Bulletin / News Desk

Germany's government decided Tuesday to join the European Union's (EU) military mission in the Central African Republic (CAR).

Up to German 80 soldiers, two transport planes and an air ambulance will be sent to CAR to support international efforts to protect the civil population and to create the conditions for providing humanitarian aid.

EU foreign ministers agreed early this year to deploy 1,000 EU troops to the conflict-stricken country.

Germany’s support to the EU operation, titled EUFOR RCA, will focus on providing support in air transport. Germany will also provide military personnel for the strategic and operational headquarters of EUFOR RCA.

The government’s decision foresees the mission continuing until February 28, 2015.

Following Tuesday’s decision, the government will seek authorization this month from the federal parliament, the Bundestag. Approval seems assured as Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative-left coalition government enjoys an overwhelming parliamentary majority.

CAR descended into anarchy a year ago when seleka rebels ousted the then president Francois Bozize, a Christian who had come to power in a 2003 coup. The rebels later installed Michel Djotodia -- a Muslim -- as interim president.

Since then, the country has been plagued by tit-for-tat sectarian violence between Christian anti-balaka militias and Muslim former seleka fighters.

Anti-Muslim violence has escalated since January, when Catherine Samba-Panza -- a Christian -- was elected interim president.

Christians, who account for the majority of the country's population, accuse Muslims of supporting former seleka rebels blamed for attacking Christian homes, looting property and carrying out summary executions.

Last Mod: 09 Nisan 2014, 12:17
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