Central African Republic

Archive Profile

2014 Country Profile

The Central African Republic hovers in a fragile state between war and peace. Its population is struggling to escape from a year of brutal violence, which has pitted neighbor against neighbor in an increasingly sectarian conflict.

At the time of writing, international peacekeeping forces including French, EU, African Union and United Nations troops have been able to prevent the worst atrocities in the capital Bangui, but civilians in the countryside remain very much at risk. The conflict in much of the country remains volatile and unpredictable, highlighting the steep challenges facing the UN’s newest peacekeeping mission, MINUSCA.

Background

For decades, the Central African Republic has been embroiled in a cycle of conflict wherein leaders are both deposed and come to power through force. The most recent round of violence has built on this legacy. In September 2012, an alliance of rebel movements came together with the aim of overthrowing President Francois Bozizé. The Séléka (“alliance” in Sango, the national language), as they called themselves, was made up of a confederation of foreign mercenaries and northern rebel groups Read More...

Key developments

Security Violence continued to escalate in the first half of 2014. In January, UN Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide Adama Dieng stated that there was a risk the country could descend into genocide. On January 28, the Security Council passed Resolution 2134 renewing the mandate of the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in the Central African Republic (BINUCA), which had been supporting peace efforts in the country since 2010. Resolution 2134 also authorized the deployment Read More...

Conclusion

Since 1997, thirteen peacekeeping operations have tried to bring stability to the Central African Republic.  CAR is currently in the midst of a politico-military crisis with deep economic roots. The conflict has also driven communities to fight against each other along religious and ethnic lines. The situation remains extremely dynamic and unpredictable. The challenges of the current French, European and UN missions are complex. For these operations to succeed, underlying structural factors Read More...

A number of important political and security challenges confront countries in Central Africa, illustrated most vividly by the rapid emergence of a rebel coalition in the Central African Republic (CAR), which gained control of approximately one-third of the country by the end of 2012. Governance concerns, including the lack of inclusive governance, continue to present risks as both Burundi and the CAR prepare for elections in the coming years. In addition, despite important progress in addressing security issues, the region is threatened by the continued operations of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).

Background

A number of important political and security challenges confront countries in Central Africa, illustrated most vividly by the rapid emergence of a rebel coalition in the Central African Republic (CAR), which gained control of approximately one-third of the country by the end of 2012. Governance concerns, including the lack of inclusive governance, continue to present risks as both Burundi and the CAR prepare for elections in the coming years. In addition, despite important progress in addressing Read More...

Key developments

Following a request by the Security Council in November 2011, UNOCA took the lead in coordinating the development of a UN regional strategy for humanitarian, development, and peacebuilding assistance to LRA-affected areas, in close coordination with the African Union (in particular its Special Envoy for the LRA), UN missions and country teams in the affected areas, and Central African states. The strategy, endorsed by the Security Council in June 2012, focuses on five key objectives: implementat Read More...

Conclusion

The security environment has stabilized in important ways in Burundi and the wider region. However, critical security and political challenges remain, illustrated most dramatically by events in the CAR as the year came to a close. How governments choose to approach these issues will largely determine future stability in the region. Funding gaps affecting national efforts in security sector reform and interrelated efforts to mitigate threats posed by armed rebel groups operating across the region Read More...