Nigeria pledges $1.5m to support AU mission in C.A.R.

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ADDIS ABABA – Nigeria on Saturday pledged 1.5 million US dollars at an international donor summit at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa to support African-led International Mission (MISCA) in the Central African Republic (CAR).

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The Minister of State 2 for Foreign Affairs, Dr Nurudeen Mohammed, announced the pledge as 60 nations came together to raise money for the crisis-stricken CAR.

“The situation in CAR demands our collective resolve to help that sister country to win the peace and embark on national reconciliation and re-establish critical government infrastructure’’, he said.

Mohammed urged parties to the conflict in CAR to “bury their differences, rebuild confidence in one another and resolve to live together in the interest of peace, stability and national development.’’

The minister called on the people of CAR to rally behind the newly installed Interim Government led by President Catherine Samba-Panza.

In addition to the financial donation, he said Nigeria was prepared to offer technical assistance to CAR with a view to post-conflict reconstruction and development.

The donor summit was held at the end of a weeklong meeting of the AU in Addis Ababa.

The European Union had pledged $61 million, the largest sum and it had already given CAR $271 million since December.

EU Africa Director, Nicholas Westcott said the bloc was conscious of the urgent need to provide political and financial support to the new transitional government in Bangui.

UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson told the conference that: “we have a collective responsibility towards the people of the Central African Republic to respond rapidly and robustly and now to prevent further atrocities.’’

He appealed to the international community to urgently provide MISCA with the support required.

According to the UN, an estimated one million of the country’s 4.6 million citizens have been displaced during months of religious violence.

Violence had erupted in the country since a coup in March 2013 toppled the government.

Around 5,500 AU troops are taking part in the MISCA peacekeeping mission and have been joined by 1,600 French soldiers. (NAN)

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