Armed ViolenceNews

Central African Republic Govt Announces Arrival Of 600 New Russian Instructors

The Russian instructors will help the Central Africa Republic in its fight against rebel groups in the country.

The Central African Republic government has announced the arrival of 600 new Russian ‘instructors’ in the country.

Marie-Noelle Koyara, CAR’s Minister of National Defence disclosed this in a recent correspondence to the Security Council of the United Nations.

This new contingent adds to the 300 who were announced in Dec. 2020 by the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs “to help in the fight against the mounting violence attributed to rebel groups in the country.”

According to Koyara, 200 of the Russian instructors would be assigned to the defense and security forces, 200 to the gendarmerie, and 200 to the national police.

Under pressure from the United Nations, the Russian government had announced the withdrawal of 300 instructors sent to the Central African Republic, adding that just 550 Russian instructors remained in the country.

The United Nations pressure is due to increasing reports of atrocities and human rights abuses by the Russian mercenaries of the Wagner Security Group against Central African Republic citizens.

However, sources on the ground say there are more than  2000 Russian ‘instructors’ currently in the country. With the arrival of the new contingent of  600, the Russian military force in the Central African Republic should be above or nearing 3000.

The head of the United Nations Organisation Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), Mankeur Ndiaye last month announced the opening of investigations on the alleged crimes attributed to the Russian paramilitary forces in the Central African Republic.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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