Delegate Name: Elleah Berger
Committee: General Assembly, Special Political Committee (SPECPOL)
Topic: Central African Republic
Delegate: Elleah Berger
School: Williamston High School
The Central African Republic (CAR) has been plagued by war for many years. Remnants of the previous Bush War in 2004, where the first democratically elected leader was ousted by General Bozize, can be identified as causes for this current civil war. FInvolved in the present conflict is the ex-Seleka, a fracture group from the Seleka, a militia group that took over many CAR cities (including the capital, Bangui) in 2012 in retaliation to the government and the fraudulent election of Bozize to the presidential position. The ex-Seleka militia are Muslim nomads who are clashing with the anti-Balaka militia, Christian agricultiral peoples. The country was divided into an ex-Seleka and anti-Balaka region, and now the cities and regions around the capital are feudal territories ruled by militia warlords. Due to this drastic situation, many are fleeing and immigrating into the surrounding countries. The already severe clean water shortage and poverty rates have grown. This issue will worsen and continue to negatively affect the already unstable government and the people of the Central African Republic if the UN does not intervene.
In an attempt to de-escalate the issue, the European Union, which Greece is a member of, sent troops to the area. The EU has also sent troops to help with this issue in the past. From January 28, 2008 to March 15, 2009 the EU Common Security and Defense Police carried out a military operation in north eastern Central African Republic and in part of its northern neighbor, Chad. Both countries agreed to the operation, which consisted of protection for refugees and UN personnel, and the facilitation of humanitarian aid. The EU also gave financial support to an African Union military mission in the Central African Republic. Since 2014 the EU has been a main contributor in financial aid to the Central African Republic, and has given almost 1.6 billion dollars in support. This year the EU will give almost 25 million dollars in humanitarian aid to the CAR in the form of food assistance, emergency shelter, healthcare, water, education, and short term agricultural support. Cameroon, Chad, and DR Congo, neighboring countries of the CAR, are also being provided with support. Like the Central African Republic, their resources are also limited, and the hosting of about 709,000 refugees increases the stress on those resources and the countries. While the European Union has taken many steps to help the Central African Republic with this issue, more must be done.
Greece recognizes that this issue of militias taking over cities can be traced back to the instability of the Central African Republic’s government. The UN should provide support to stabilize the government, which would in turn make the CAR strong enough to solve this problem itself, as well as other problems that will occur in the future. In the meantime, troops and humanitarian aid should be provided by the wealthier UN countries who wish to help solve this destructive and deadly issue that will only worsen. The lack of fresh, clean water is a very severe issue that could be partially alleviated by the drilling of new wells funded by the UN and its nations. The EU and UN should continue to provide humanitarian aid, especially for food and water access. Greece expects to work with other European Union nations and any nations who wish to provide support in any way possible.