UN withdraws Gabon peacekeepers from CAR over sexual abuse claims Central African Republic News

The Gabonese Defense Ministry says “several serious acts known to be against military ethics and the honor of the armed forces” have been reported in recent weeks.

Gabon’s Defense Ministry has said the United Nations will withdraw the country’s 450-strong peacekeeping force from the Central African Republic (CAR) over sexual abuse allegations.

“In recent weeks, there have been reports of extraordinarily serious acts known to be against military ethics and the honor of the armed forces, committed by some elements in Gabonese battalions,” the ministry said in a statement sent to AFP news agency on Wednesday. “

“After processing several cases of alleged sexual abuse and abuse, the United Nations today decided to withdraw the Gabonese contingent from MINUSCA”, the UN mission in CAR, and “an investigation has been opened by Gabon,” the statement read. .

Al Jazeera’s Nicholas Haque, who has widely covered the sexual abuse allegations against the Blue Helmets that have tarnished his reputation globally, said the lawyer representing the victims called the news “a small victory”. – but that’s not enough”.

“What she wants to see is to prosecute the people involved in the sexual abuse cases that are happening in CAR,” he said.

“For UN conventions, soldiers involved in sexual abuse charges are not prosecuted in the country where the crimes are committed, but in their home country. So we looked to Gabonese prosecutors [the CAR’s capital] For the past two years, Bangui has been investigating the soldiers of that country under the supervision of the United Nations.

UN peacekeepers from the Gabon patrol in the Central African Republic city of Bria on June 12, 2017 [File: Saber Jendoubi/AFP]

One of the world’s poorest countries, the CAR has been chronically unstable since it gained independence from France in 1960.

It is currently suffering from a brutal civil strife that erupted in 2013 following a coup against then-president François Boziz.

MINUSCA was deployed by the United Nations in April 2014 to dismantle the Sélica coalition of armed groups that had overthrown it against the militias supporting Boziz.

The intensity of the conflict has decreased dramatically but MINUSCA has 15,000 employees in the country, of whom 14,000 are in uniform.

Their main mission is to protect civilians.

Allegations of sex crimes involving peacekeepers have come up repeatedly, and while some detachments have been withdrawn in the past, none have publicly proven convictions, at least to date.

Gabon’s Defense Ministry stated that if “the alleged facts … are proved, the perpetrators will be brought before military courts and judged with the utmost rigor”.

“Gabon has always demanded abusive and exemplary treatment from its military in its territory and abroad,” he said.

In early 2017, judges in France decided not to bring charges against French soldiers accused of sexually abusing minors during peacekeeping missions in the CAR. After an investigation, the prosecutor dropped the case, saying there was not enough evidence to charge the soldiers allegedly involved.

The United Nations has struggled for years with allegations of sexual abuse and abuse by UN peacekeepers around the world.

Since 2010, it has posted 822 such allegations on its website.

By nationality, the peacekeepers with the most charges since 2015 have been Cameroon, with 44 cases, followed by South Africa (37), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (32), Gabon (31) and the Republic of the Congo (26).

In March 2018, Gabon said it planned to withdraw its crew as the conflict was coming to an end.

However, three months later, his Gabonese counterpart Ali Bongo Ondimba, at the behest of CAR President Faustín-Arcanz Toudera, said the team would remain.

nonton the naked director season 2

Leave a Comment