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 Central African Republic profile

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AuthorMessage
Mr007
Posting Rank:Trooper Candidate


Posts : 39
Join date : 2010-12-27

PostSubject: Central African Republic profile   Sun Oct 30, 2011 4:22 pm

The Central African Republic (CAR) has been unstable since its independence from France in 1960 and is one of the least-developed countries in the world.

It has endured several coups and a notorious period under a self-declared emperor, Jean-Bedel Bokassa, who headed a brutal regime.

The Bokassa era ended in 1979, when he was overthrown in a coup led by David Dacko and backed by French commandos based in the country.

After just two years in office Mr Dacko was toppled by Andre Kolingba, who eventually allowed multi-party presidential elections and was duly rejected in the first round.

Mr Kolingba's successor, Ange-Felix Patasse, had to contend with serious unrest which culminated in riots and looting in 1997 by unpaid soldiers.

When in that year the French pulled out, there were fears of a power vacuum, so Paris financed a group of French-speaking African countries to create a peacekeeping force. That force was then transformed into the UN Mission to the Central African Republic, or Minurca.

In 1999 Mr Patasse beat nine other candidates to become president again, but there were allegations of electoral fraud. He was overthrown in a coup in 2003 and went into exile in Togo.
Continue reading the main story
At a glance
A mother sits with her two-year old malnourished child who is being cared for at a medical clinic run by Doctors Without Borders in Gordil in the Central African Republic

* Politics: Country described as a failed state in permanent crisis, facing mutinies and rebellions. Peace process envisaged elections in 2010, demobilisation and reintegration of rebel groups
* Economy: Decades of instability have undermined the economy. People here are among world's poorest.
* International: Suffers spill-over of violence from neighbours; assisted by French military; hosts international peacekeepers. Ugandan troops pursuing rebels

Country profiles compiled by BBC Monitoring

Illegal weapons proliferate across the CAR, the legacy of years of unrest. Armed groups are active in the volatile north. The unrest has displaced tens of thousands of Central Africans; many of them have crossed the border into Chad.

Some progress towards ending the conflict was made in 2008, when peace talks led to an agreement committing two of the main rebel groups to disarm. The process culminated with the creation of a national unity government incorporating two rebel leaders in early 2009.

However, another threat has appeared - the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels of neighbouring Uganda, whose insurgency has spread to the wider region, including CAR. In 2009, LRA activities forced the populations of several towns and villages to flee, while government forces struggled to contain the gunmen.

The CAR possesses considerable agricultural, water and mineral resources. But corruption is rife, according to the IMF, and affects the timber and diamond industries.

The country is endowed with virgin rainforests and has some of the highest densities of lowland gorillas and forest elephants in Africa.

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