The people of the Central African Republic, international peacekeepers and aid workers continue to come under attack by armed groups there, a nation roiled by almost two years of violence that has displaced over a million people and killed as many as 5,000. A hundred thousand migrants from neighboring nations have been forced out of the country by the violence.
Since the renewed fighting October 5, at least a dozen civilians have been killed. A Polish Catholic missionary has been kidnapped near the border with Cameroon. Six United Nation peacekeepers from that country and Burundi were wounded in an ambush over the same violent weekend. The attack follows the killing of the first U.N. peacekeeper in the C.A.R., a Pakistani national, and the wounding of others from Pakistan and Bangladesh.
This violence must stop immediately. We reiterate our strong support for the efforts of Transitional President Samba-Panza to bring an end to violence and restore stability to her country. All leaders, including those of armed groups, must work together with the government to advance the political transition process and the national dialogue, which was agreed to in the July 23 Brazzaville agreements. Violence and calls for a change of government must stop.
All Central Africans must come together now to tackle the hard work of national reconciliation leading to a peaceful political transition and democratic elections. We condemn those political spoilers and human rights abusers who foment and commit violence. Such individuals have no place in the political future of the C.A.R. or in positions of trust. We call for a thorough and transparent investigation of all incidents of violence against civilians. Perpetrators must be held accountable.
We stand with the people and leaders of C.A.R as they seek to end the violence and bring peace, stability, and security to their country