International

Angry crowd destroys UN base in Central Africa

A road accident provoked the attack.

Villagers in Central African Republic attacked a forward base used by UN peacekeepers after a civilian was killed in a road accident, the UN force said Friday.

The incident happened on Thursday in Beboura, in the northwest of the troubled country, said Vladimir Monteiro, spokesman for MINUSCA, the UN mission in the CAR.

“There was an accident involving a UN vehicle which led to the death of an individual. Local people then decided to attack the forward military post,” he said.

“Between 10 and 20 (UN) troops were there at the time. We evacuated them. Two were injured,” he said.

“While we regret this accidental death, which we will investigate thoroughly, we condemn this reaction. It's not by destroying this base that people will be protected,” Mr. Monteiro said.

Incidents of this kind involving MINUSCA, which deployed in the CAR in 2014, are rare, although the force is facing criticism from some politicians and the public at a time when the country is struggling to implement a February 2019 peace deal.

Deeply impoverished despite mineral wealth, the CAR has been in the grip of violence since 2013.

More than two-thirds of the former French colony lies in the hands of armed groups, who typically claim ethnic or religious affiliations and often fight over resources.

According to the UN, 1.6 million people out of a population of 4.7 million are “extremely vulnerable.”

MINUSCA's current complement is 14,700, 12,800 of whom are either troops or police, according to the force's website.

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 5:24:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/angry-crowd-destroys-un-base-in-central-africa/article31312385.ece

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