PRST on the situation in the Central African Republic
The Security Council expresses its deep concern about the recent upsurge of violence and instability in the Central African Republic (CAR), which aimed at destabilising the country and jeopardising the transition process. The Security Council strongly condemns such violence, including all attacks against civilians, intercommunal violence, targeted violence against women and children, lootings of humanitarian premises and attacks against United Nations peacekeepers.
The Security Council emphasises that some of these attacks may constitute war crimes and that those responsible for all abuses and violations of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law must be held accountable.
The Security Council also emphasises that those undermining the peace, stability or security of the CAR, threatening or impeding the political transition process, targeting of civilians and attacking peacekeepers may meet criteria for designation under sanctions as stated in UNSCR 2196 (2015).
The Security Council reiterates its strong condemnation of all violations of applicable international law and demands that all parties concerned strictly comply with their obligations under international humanitarian law and international human rights law, as applicable, as well as implement relevant decisions of the Security Council.
The Security Council reiterates its support for the Transitional Authorities, under the leadership of Catherine Samba-Panza as the Transitional Head of State, and calls on all stakeholders in the CAR to commit to peace and reconciliation through the implementation of the agreements adopted at the Bangui Forum in May 2015.
The Security Council reiterates its decision to apply the asset freeze and travel ban measures contained in paragraphs 4 and 7 of resolution 2196 (2015), to individuals and entities engaging in or providing support for acts that undermine the peace, stability or security of the CAR, consistent with paragraph 11 and 12 of resolution 2196 (2015). The Security Council also reiterates its intention to further expand the list of individuals and entities maintained by the Sanctions Committee established pursuant to resolution 2127 (2013) by adding those responsible for the recent outbreak of violence, particularly those who have provided support to, acted for or on behalf of, or at the direction of, an individual or an entity already sanctioned by the Committee.
The Security Council reiterates that those responsible for the recent violence, both perpetrators and those who otherwise participate, should be held accountable and reiterates that some of those recent acts of violence may amount to crimes under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), to which CAR is State Party. The Security Council welcomes in this regard the statement of the Prosecutor of the ICC of 30 September 2015 regarding the recent upsurge of violence in the CAR, and in which the Prosecutor noted that a year ago, following a referral by the Central African Republic authorities, the Prosecutor opened an investigation into crimes committed in the country since 1 August 2012.
The Security Council calls on the Transitional Authorities to launch, with the technical assistance of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the CAR (MINUSCA), investigations to identify those responsible and bring them to justice.
The Security Council underlines the possible role that the domestic Special Criminal Court might play in this regard, and stresses the urgency in the Court taking up its initial functions, and emphasizes the need for MINUSCA to provide technical assistance and capacity building for the CAR Authorities in line with paragraph 32(g) of its mandate pursuant to resolution 2217 (2015)..
The Security Council expresses concern about the recurring incidents of prisoners escaping from custody in the CAR, which negatively impacts the fight against impunity and the efforts to stabilise the country, calls upon the Transitional Authorities to bolster their efforts to investigate and prosecute and to detain prisoners in a safe, secure and humane manner, with MINUSCA’s support as appropriate in accordance with its mandate. It also expresses its concerns about the reported participation of some elements of the Forces armées centrafricaines (FACA) in the recent incidents in Bangui, underlining the need for training, and the importance of progress in reforming the security sector, including on vetting and on accountability processes in the defense and security forces, to be accomplished before the FACA can be returned to operational duties.
The Security Council demands that all those who seek to weaken the transitional government from within and outside the CAR, including militias and non-state armed groups, cease all forms of violence and destabilizing activities immediately, lay down their arms, and fully implement the agreement for Cessation of Hostilities and Violence signed on 23 July 2014 in Brazzaville, Congo as well as the agreement on principles of DDR and SSR adopted at the Bangui Forum of May 2015.
The Security Council takes note of the significant progress achieved in the voters registration process in the CAR, with an unprecedented number of citizens registered to date ; calls for this process to be completed swiftly, and emphasizes the importance of the registration of all CAR populations, including refugees in neighbouring States.
The Security Council reiterates the critical importance and urgency of holding the constitutional referendum and first rounds of presidential and legislative elections by the end of 2015, in a free, fair, transparent manner, which is inclusive of all the components of the CAR society, and in accordance with the Transitional Constitutional Charter. In this regard, the Security Council underlines that the provisions of the Transitional Constitutional Charter should be strictly and fully implemented, and calls on the Transitional Authorities, including the National Elections Authority (ANE) and the National Transitional Council, to adopt and publish, without any further delay, a revised calendar for the holding of elections as soon as possible. The Security Council also calls upon the ANE to continue the preparations for the referendum and the elections, without delay.
The Security Council underscores the importance of making all appropriate efforts to ensure peace and reconciliation in the Central African Republic, in this regard commends the joint action of religious leaders in the CAR in pursuing intercommunal peace, and calls upon the CAR authorities to take all necessary steps to create conditions for lasting reconciliation, including by protecting civilians from any religious or ethnic-based violence.
The Security Council emphasises that the continued role of the region, including the International Mediator, the Chair of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the countries of the sub-region, as well as the African Union, and the United Nations as participants in the mediation, is critical for the promotion of lasting peace and stability in the CAR . The Security Council encourages countries in the region to further use their leverage and regional meetings to encourage progress on the transition and towards the elections and to prevent spoilers, within the CAR and outside, from attempting to disrupt these processes.
The Security Council calls upon troop and police contributing countries to MINUSCA to expedite the upgrading of their capabilities, and urges other member states to provide the necessary support to enable them to reach United Nations standards without any further delay.
The Security Council further calls upon the international community to continue to support the CAR by addressing critical priorities articulated by Central Africans during the Bangui Forum for the next 12-18 months, which include disarmament, demobilization, reintegration and repatriation (DDRR), security sector reform, justice and reconciliation, including the establishment of the domestic Special Criminal Court, strengthening the capacity of local courts and the establishment of the Justice, Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the restoration and extension of State authority in support of democratic and economic governance, and economic and social development. The Security Council welcomes the high-level event held on the margins of the General Assembly, and encourages Member-States who have pledged support for these programmes to disburse funds quickly and to garner additional support in priority areas that remain underfunded.
The Security Council reiterates its support for MINUSCA to assist, as mandated by the Security Council in resolution 2217 (2015) the Transitional Authorities and the people of the Central African Republic in their efforts to bring lasting peace and stability to their country, protect civilians, including those targeted on ethnic or religious grounds, and restore State authority over the entire territory.
The Security Council expresses concern with reports that two sanctioned individuals are travelling in the region, and underlines its observation that individuals who knowingly facilitate the travel of a listed individual in violation of the travel ban may be determined by the Committee to have met the designation criteria for sanctions.