CAR: UN expels Congolese peacekeepers for cases of sexual abuses

By Desmond Kokim
Posted on Thursday, 14 January 2016 10:00

According to reports, three Congolese soldiers were accused of raping two women and a minor in the Central African Republic city of Bambari in October of 2015.

The decision to remove the Congolese troops is the kind of policy that we very strongly support.

Hundreds of Congolese peacekeepers serving in CAR have been dismissed, and the UN said the repatriated troops will not be replaced by another contingent from Congo.

The UN said Congo’s responses regarding the sexual abuse allegations were taken into consideration in the decision to repatriate their troops.

Sexual abuse allegations have plagued the UN peacekeeping mission in CAR since unrest broke out in the country between mostly Muslim Seleka rebels and mostly Christian anti-Balaka vigilantes.

In 2014, the UN mission in CAR was investigated over how it handled child sexual abuse allegations against French troops that year.

However, the UN has taken a stand against sexual abuse by dismissing the Congolese peacekeepers from CAR.

The UN said Congo was being removed from the mission because inspections showed its troops failed to meet requirements for training, equipment and preparedness.

Britain’s deputy ambassador to the UN, Peter Wilson, commended the body’s decision.

“The decision to remove the Congolese troops is the kind of policy that we very strongly support. Frankly, in the context of CAR, it is a welcome shift,” Wilson said.

Congolese peacekeepers will remain in CAR until a contingent from another country arrives to replace them.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has vowed to step up efforts to prevent sexual abuse by peacekeepers.

Experts say Congolese authorities have taken steps to prevent sexual abuse by its troops and the UN stands ready to support these efforts.

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