The European Union (EU) has temporarily suspended the training of the Central African Republic national army, FACA, over the activities of the Russian mercenaries of the Wagner Security Group in the country.
Brig. Gen. Jacques Langlade de Montgros, Chief of the European Union Training Mission in the Central African Republic (EUTM-CAR) announced the suspension on Tuesday, Dec.14 during a meeting with media professionals in Moana Camp, Bangui.
The European Union has been training the Central African Republic national army for the past five years.
According to Brig. Gen. de Montgros, the European Union is suspending the training facet of its actions in the Central African Republic but would maintain the other aspect of their cooperation.
“There are two facets of the EUTM-CAR. The first facet is the strategic advice delivered to the benefit of the army high command and services of the Ministry of Defense. This facet is maintained and is still continuing within the perspective of putting in place the defense council,” he said.
“The second facet, which is more visible, is the training facet. This is temporarily suspended due to the actions of mercenaries of Wagner alongside FACA forces and due to the exactions committed by these mercenaries against the Central African Republic populations.”
The EUTM-CAR has, however, given three conditions for the suspension to be lifted.
The first condition is that trained units would not be deployed directly or indirectly by the Russian military Wagner Group.
The second condition is that assurance be given that a robust selection is carried out before the beginning of training in coordination with the United Nations Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) and the third condition is that the Ministry of Defense gives assurance that it would ensure that all the actions are coherent.
Brig. Gen. de Montgros said the insistence on ensuring the global coherence of the model is an essential factor to the equilibrium and solidity in the short term of the Central African Republic army.
Launched on July 16, 2016, EUTM-CAR has advised and trained more than 4,500 men and women of the Central African Republic national army with the aim of “rendering them modern, efficacious, inclusive and democratically responsible by dispensing strategic advice in the Ministry of Defense and to the army general staff as well as intelligence and training to the armed forces.”
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