France confirms that it has frozen its budgetary aid to the Central African Republic and has also suspended its military cooperation. In Paris, the Ministry of Defense invokes an anti-French campaign led by Russia and in which the Central African authorities are said to be complicit.
These are five volunteers who worked in particular with the Ministry of Defense, the Youth pioneers, and the Prime Minister who are concerned. They have all left their posts and most are already back in France. These aid workers essentially had an advisory role to the Central African authorities in the context of the reform of the security sector and the reconstruction of the army.
Bilateral training of the French forces with the Central African armed forces is also suspended. They were notably provided by French elements from Gabon.
France’s decision is not final, however, as is the case with budgetary cooperation. ” If there are positive and strong signals that are taken, things can be reassessed very quickly. », Declared the French ambassador on Monday at the end of a meeting with the Minister of Finance.
We are indeed far from a total withdrawal. France maintains its cooperation in the public security sector with the police, gendarmerie and civil security. About a hundred French soldiers are involved in the training provided by the European Union.
At Bangui airport, more than 100 French soldiers are present, dedicated to the protection of this strategic site and of Camp Mpoko, which houses elements of the UN mission and the European mission.
Cooperation also continues in the justice, health and humanitarian sectors.