Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Africa News .

C. Africa won't sap France's military: minister
by Staff Writers
Bangui, Central African Republic (AFP) Jan 02, 2014

France's military mission in the Central African Republic will not suck in its troops in an expanding role, Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian vowed Thursday during a visit to the restive country's capital.

Le Drian predicted last month's deployment of 1,600 French soldiers to the former French colony to help an African force there would prove as successful as France's mission launched nearly a year ago in Mali, where an Islamist militant advance was halted.

Experts at the time, he told some of the French troops in Bangui, had predicted: "'In Mali, France is on a slippery slope' -- luckily for us, we didn't listen to those experts. I say that for Mali and I say that also for Central Africa."

Intervening in Africa "is also ensuring France's security," he said. "When there is a security vacuum, it's an opportunity for all sorts of trafficking and an open door to all types of terrorism."

France insists its UN-mandated mission to the Central African Republic is clearly defined and will not be open-ended.

However, efforts to persuade European partners to contribute soldiers to the mission have fallen short. Several countries are providing logistical support -- the United States and Britain, for instance, supplying military transport aircraft -- but are balking at putting boots on the ground.

The French deployment, which is focusing on disarming both the ex-rebel Seleka members -- mostly Muslims -- and the Christian vigilantes, has lost two soldiers in one clash early December.

The deadly sectarian violence has forced people to flee their homes, with more than 100,000 of them now in a camp close to Bangui's airport where the French military is based.

But the unrest led the aid group Doctors without Borders (MSF) to announce Thursday that it was reducing its emergency activities at the camp.

"The violence over the past two days that took place near the MSF clinic at Bangui airport caused the death of two children," MSF said in a statement. The group also said it treated some 40 wounded people there.

"It has been necessary for MSF to considerably cut back on emergency medical activities in the zone. We've reduced the size of our medical team and from now on only the most serious cases are to be taken care of before being sent to other health facilities," it said.

Analysts believe the French presence will have to be boosted given ongoing violence.

"Our soldiers have found themselves alone in a situation tougher than first thought. There will be no quick fix and our troops will probably be reinforced," Francois Heisbourg, of the Paris-based Foundation for Strategic Studies, said last week in an op-ed for Le Monde newspaper.


Related Links
Africa News - Resources, Health, Food

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

S.Sudan president, rebel chief due in Ethiopia for peace talks: Addis Ababa
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (AFP) Dec 31, 2013
South Sudan's president and rebel leader Riek Machar are flying for face-to-face peace talks in Ethiopia, a foreign ministry spokesman said Tuesday, to try and end two weeks of fighting feared to have left thousands dead. "Both President Salva Kiir and Dr Riek Machar are coming to Addis Ababa for talks, they are coming now and should meet today," Ethiopian foreign ministry spokesman Dina Muf ... read more

To grow or to defend: How plants decide

Extinction risk prompts ban on fishing for caviar-producing sturgeon

The fate of the eels

Genetic discovery points the way to much bigger yields in tomato, other flowering food plants

Local factors cause dramatic spikes in coastal ocean acidity

Los Angeles likely to score driest year since record-keeping began

Major reductions in seafloor marine life from climate change by 2100

World's biggest fish market set for new home

Methane hydrates and global warming

Geoengineering research, ethics, governance explored

UN appoints two special envoys on climate

Assessing the impact of climate change on a global scale

Brazil's Vale revamps power generation investments

EU probes Germany energy price breaks for business

Ukraine's Two New Energy Deals

Keeping the lights on

York scientists' significant step forward in biofuels quest

Seaweed Energy Solutions (SES) acquires wild seaweed operation in Norway

Algae to crude oil: Million-year natural process takes minutes in the lab

Biorefinery could put South Australian forest industry back on growth track

South African Trauma Center Launches Portable Electronic Trauma Health Record Application

Iran vows to restore glory of quake-hit Bam citadel

Hundreds of corpses unburied after Philippine typhoon

Brazil vows better flood alert systems

Scientists uncover hidden river of rubbish threatening to devastate wildlife

Morocco begins emptying beached oil tanker

One dead, seven injured by contaminated China parcels

Pollution alarm as Greeks switch to firewood for heat

Finnish Santa Claus wants to go global, all year round

Finland looks to old foe Russia for new investment

Russia files first WTO complaint against EU

Rusal starts legal case against London Metal Exchange

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement