CAR : sanctions for the return of peace [fr]
Renewal of the sanctions regime on CAR - Explanation of vote by Mr François Delattre, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations - Security Council - 30 January 2018
France welcomes the unanimous adoption of resolution 2399 (2018), renewing the sanctions regime on the Central African Republic. Following the adoption of resolution 2387 (2017), renewing the mandate of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) last November, this resolution is a new sign of the Council’s full attention to the situation in the Central African Republic. In that context, that I would like to underline three points.
1/ First, the resolution similarly renews the measures concerning the arms embargo, the travel bans and the assets freeze. This system is still very relevant in the light of the current situation in the Central African Republic. Armed groups are, unfortunately, still present in a large part of the territory and continue to obtain supplies through illicit flows of arms and ammunition from neighbouring countries. They also exploit the illicit trafficking of natural resources to enrich themselves. In this context, it is absolutely essential that all Member States come together to fully respect the sanctions regime so that it can be effectively implemented in the service of peace in the Central African Republic.
In addition, the exemption and notification procedures remain effective tools allowing for the Central African defence and security forces to be trained, equipped and armed, while limiting the risk of arms proliferation. They also support the Central African authorities in their security sector reform process and in their strategy of extending State authority.To conclude on this point, it is important to support the efforts of MINUSCA in the fight against arms trafficking. To that end, the tasks of the working group established within the Mission are specified so that it can contribute to a better implementation of the embargo. For example, it will be able to transmit recommendations concerning weapons seizures when trafficking routes have been identified.
2/ Secondly, the resolution also sheds light on incitement to violence, whether ethnic, religious or against MINUSCA. Such incitement is a scourge for the Central African Republic and at the root of violence that claims too many casualties, among both the civilian population and the Blue Helmets. In that context, the perpetrators of these incitements to violence must now know that their actions will not go unpunished. Beyond the action undertaken by the Central African justice system and international justice, the sanctions regime on the Central African Republic will now punish individuals who incite to violence, given their potential to undermine peace, stability and security in the Central African Republic. There can be no lasting peace in the Central African Republic if such incitement continues, and the Security Council intends to assume its responsibilities. In the same vein, I would also like to point out that attacks on humanitarian workers are now recognized as a designation criterion equal to, for example, attacks on MINUSCA. The proliferation of such attacks, which make the Central African Republic one of the most dangerous countries in the world for that profession, is unacceptable. Once again, we have sent a strong signal to those who would attack the women and men whose work is indispensable for people in need.
3/ Finally, the resolution paves the way for the development of criteria to assess the impact of the arms embargo on the Central African Republic. While we are not considering, in the short term, a loosening of the arms embargo, taking into account the current situation in the country, this is a question of showing that the arms embargo will be able to evolve at the right time, including in the light of progress of security sector reform. In the specific case of the Central African Republic, sanctions are obviously not an end in themselves, but a means to contributing to our shared goal, which is the stabilization of and the return of lasting peace to the Central African Republic.
In that context, I will conclude by reiterating France’s full support for President Faustin Archange Touadéra, as well as for the African Initiative for Peace and Reconciliation in the Central African Republic, in their efforts to reach a comprehensive political agreement and reconciliation of all those of the Central African Republic.