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UN chief wants more peacekeepers for CAR

06 february 2015, 16:27

 UN chief Ban Ki-moon is seeking to boost the UN force in the Central African Republic by 1,030 peacekeepers as the country prepares for elections, according to a letter released Thursday, AFP reports.

Ban asked the Security Council in the letter to authorize the additional 750 military personnel and 280 police for MINUSCA, which stands at about 8,600.

"The security situation remains volatile," Ban wrote, citing ongoing clashes between Muslim Seleka rebels and Christian anti-Balaka groups.

"It will be especially important for the additional capability to be made available in time to enhance security before, during and after the electoral period," he added.

Presidential and legislative elections are due in July and August, capping CAR's long road to recovery after the violence that was unleashed following a March 2013 coup.

Ban also asked for 20 corrections personnel to help run recently re-opened prisons outside Bangui.

UN troops have arrested 240 people including several high-profile leaders of armed groups in recent months.

MINUSCA was deployed in September, taking over from an African Union-led mission.

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