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U.N.'s Ban stresses import of CAR truce

Jan. 16, 2013 at 10:27 AM

UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 16 (UPI) -- All parties to the conflict in the Central African Republic are called on to honor the terms of a peace deal reached in Gabon, the U.N. secretary-general said.

The U.N. Security Council this week expressed "serious concerns" over human rights abuses that resulted from the fighting between the rebel Seleka coalition and pro-government forces in CAR.

The Seleka coalition agreed to the terms of a cease-fire agreement during peace negotiations with CAR officials in nearby Gabon following their advance on CAR's capital Bangui. Their campaign was meant to pressure President Francois Bozize to step aside.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon issued a statement through his spokesman's office calling on all sides to respect the need for a political solution to the crisis.

"He urges the government of CAR, politico-military groups, the Seleka coalition and opposition parties to fully implement these agreements," the statement read.

Weak state authority, ethnic fighting and a long history of political turmoil have left CAR with a scarred legacy.

Bozize toppled the government of former President Ange-Felix Patasse in a 2003 uprising. He served as the top military official in the Patasse administration.

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