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France to deploy 400 more troops to Central African Republic

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France has said it is planning to reinforce its troops in the Central African Republic (CAR) by sending 400 more soldiers to the former French colony.

French President Francois Hollande’s office said on Friday in a statement that the additional troops would join the 1,600 French soldiers already stationed in the CAR.

The decision was made after a meeting of a top defense committee in the Élysée Palace in the capital, Paris.

The Central African Republic has been facing deadly unrest since December last year, when Christian militia launched coordinated attacks against the mostly terrorist Muslim Seleka group, which toppled the government in March 2013.

France invaded the CAR on December 5, 2013, after the United Nations Security Council adopted a resolution giving the African Union and Paris the go-ahead to send troops to the country.

Paris claims that the aim of the mission is to create stability in the country in order to allow humanitarian aid to reach violence-hit areas. However, France’s military presence has so far failed to end the ongoing sectarian violence in the country.

More than 1,000 people have been killed in the Central African Republic since last December, and nearly one million people have fled their homes.


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