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Security Council – Meeting on the situation in Central African Republic

Statement delivered by Undersecretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Vincenzo Amendola, at the Security Council meeting on the situation in Central African Republic —

I thank you, Mr. President.

First of all, I would like to thank SRSG Onanga-Anyanga for his briefing. We commend MINUSCA for the tireless efforts in halting violence and protecting civilians. Its strong posture against the armed groups prevented them to further expand their control over larger parts of the country. I would like to seize the occasion to reiterate our condolences for these losses.

I also thank ASG Gilmour for his presentation. We welcome the UN mapping project of violations of international humanitarian law and violations and abuses of human rights committed in the country from 2003 to 2015. This can become an important tool for the Special Criminal Court – which we hope it will soon be fully operational.

Mr. President,

Italy is seriously concerned by the significant deterioration of the security situation in CAR over the last few months, that had a severe impact on the civilian population. It risks derailing the progress achieved over the last year.

In this fragile security environment, the humanitarian situation – already dramatic – continues to deteriorate, with increasing numbers of newly displaced people and refugees.
The worsening of the security situation in CAR is proving that the political process is not moving forward. It is positive that the meeting held in Bangui in April of the Comité de Suivi on DDRR process was attended by the representatives of all the 14 armed groups. Nonetheless, it seems that this platform is not sufficient to stop the fighting. That is the reason why other actors have step in to support and complement the reconciliation process led by President Touadéra. In this sense, we welcome and commend the efforts led by the Community of Sant’Egidio, which President Impagliazzo has just presented to the Council.

We remain fully supportive of this mediation initiative and we hope that in the coming weeks the African Union will be able to put in place a roadmap, to which this Council could give its support.

Italy believes that it is key to ensure a close coordination of the different initiatives, bearing in mind that President Touadéra, who was democratically elected by his people last year, must remain the pivot of the Central African political scene.

We therefore call on the CAR Authorities, on one side, and all the armed groups, on the other side, to step up their efforts and address the root causes of the conflict. The international community, for its part, has to help concretely and significantly the Central African Government in these different sectors.

In this regard, we welcome the action plan of the Secretary General and we fully support the priorities outlined by SRSG Onanga-Anyanga.

Italy remains an active player in the humanitarian and development sector through the activity of its Development Cooperation and supports the pledges made at the Brussels Conference. We hope that all the relevant parties swiftly proceeds with creating the conditions for the pledges made at the Brussels Conference to be eventually turned into reality. In this regard, just few days ago the European Union and the Government of CAR signed a programme of support for the CAR worth 382 million euro over the period 2014-2020, with which the EU shows a clear commitment to step up its support for the authorities and people of the CAR.

The European Union, plays also a major role in complementing on the ground the efforts of MINUSCA. The EU Training Mission (EUTM) in CAR is providing an invaluable contribution to the security sector reform. In fact, EUTM has just completed the training of the first battalion of the Central African Armed Forces.

But any kind of international support and any discussion on the priorities for the future of the country could prove to be useless without a real political agreement. At this critical juncture for the history of the country, the Central Africans should make an effort in the direction of a long-lasting peace.

Thank you, Mr. President.