AFRICA/CENTRAL AFRICA - Security forces thwart rebel offensive against the capital

Wednesday, 13 January 2021 wars   local churches  

Bangui (Agenzia Fides) - The Central African security forces thwarted an attempted attack on Bangui "in the early hours of the morning", the responsible authorities of the Central African Republic reported on January 13th. Prime Minister Ngrebada Firmin announced that attackers were arrested and placed in pre-trial detention. He stated that "the investigation will make it possible to identify all those responsible and accomplices in this destabilization operation against the institutions of the republic". Early in the morning, the attackers are said to have tried to enter Bangui on several fronts, particularly in the north of the city, where they wanted to gain access to districts PK 12 and Pk 9", the Prime Minister said on his Twitter profile. These are the first attacks on Bangui since the start of the offensive by armed groups in connection with the presidential election on December 27th. On 19 December 2020, eight days before the presidential and parliamentary elections, a coalition of six of the most powerful armed groups (Coalition des patriotes pour le changement - CPC), had formed and occupied two-thirds of the Central African Republic since the beginning of the eight-year civil war. Some time ago, the coalition announced an offensive aimed at preventing Touadéra from being re-elected. Several cities have been attacked by rebels in recent days after the national electoral authority declared President Fuastin Touadéra the winner in the first round. The election victory is being contested by the opposition. Bangassou in the southeast of the country is one of the cities besieged by the rebels (see Fides, 5/1/2021). On January 9th, the army repulsed a rebel offensive against Bouar in the west of the country (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 13/1/2021)