French, UN troops accused of horrendous abuse in CAR
Posted on April 5th, 2016

Courtesy PressTV

French troops and UN peacekeepers in the Central African Republic (CAR) are facing extremely troubling” allegations of abusing the local population.

The United Nations said in a statement on Wednesday that a UN team has received accounts that French troops, known as the Sangaris, forced girls to engage in sexual acts with animals in return for a small amount of money.

We’ve received reports of cases of bestiality involving French troops but we have not confirmed them at this point,” an unnamed UN official said.

The exact number and nature of these extremely troubling allegations are still being determined,” the statement added.

According to the statement, the victims were abused between 2013 and 2015 in the Kemo Prefecture of the country.

A UN team was sent to the area this week to interview victims and gather information on the latest wave of allegations hitting the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) force.

This picture, taken on February 18, 2014, shows French troops at a checkpoint in Bangui, the Central African Republic (CAR). (By AFP)
This picture, taken on February 18, 2014, shows French troops at a checkpoint in Bangui, the Central African Republic (CAR). (By AFP)

The statement further said that UN troops from Burundi and Gabon will be confined to their bases during the probe.

This file photo shows residents as they walk near the United Nations Square in Bangui, the Central African Republic (CAR). (By AFP)

Advocacy group AIDS-Free World, a non-governmental organization that has been monitoring cases of sex abuse by peacekeepers, described the latest allegations as shocking.”

The advocacy group said in a press that three girls told a UN rights officer that in 2014 they were tied up and undressed by a Sangaris military commander inside a camp and forced to have sex with a dog.

The UN Security Council is due to hear a report on the latest allegations during a closed-door meeting on Thursday.

On Monday, the UN reported two new cases of sexual abuse, including that of a 14-year-old girl, by Burundian and Moroccan troops in the African state.

In August, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon fired the mission chief in the CAR over increasing allegations of sexual abuse of children by the forces under his watch.

France has thousands of troops in the CAR, 14 of whom are under investigation over the allegations.

The CAR plunged into crisis in December 2013, when anti-balaka militia began coordinated attacks against the Seleka group, which had toppled the government in March that year.

France effectively invaded the CAR, a former French colony, after the UN Security Council adopted a resolution giving the African Union and France the go-ahead to send troops to the country.

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