BRAZZAVILLE: Peace talks between Central Africa’s sectarian rivals were suspended Tuesday after the ex-rebel Seleka group failed to show up less than a day before the deadline of a deal.
The two main negotiating sessions of the talks being held in Brazzaville — one on securing an end to hostilities, the other on disarming fighters in CAR — were subsequently suspended. A third workshop on the political transition went ahead at the request of the regional grouping ECCAS, according to a member of the Congolese organising committee. The Congolese source said delegates from the mainly Muslim Seleka had been provided with a copy of the draft accord for the talks, which had been due to end on Wednesday, and were apparently still studying the text.
One of Africa’s poorest countries, CAR has been mired in chaos since the Seleka seized power in a March 2013 coup, with months of atrocities by rebels gone rogue sparking reprisal attacks by mostly Christian anti-balaka vigilantes.
The three-day forum for reconciliation and political dialogue, chaired by Congo’s President Denis Sassou Nguesso and backed by a contact group of some 30 countries, was aimed a resolving the crisis that has left thousands of civilians dead and driven more than a million people from their homes.
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