United Nations Secretary-General Guterres issued a statement through a spokesman on January 19 local time condemning the ambushes launched by armed elements on the 18th against the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) near Bangasou in the south of the country.
The attack allegedly carried out by the Alliance for Patriots for Change resulted in the death of a Gabonese peacekeeper and one Moroccan peacekeeper.
Secretary-General Guterres expressed his deep condolences to the families of peacekeepers and to the people and Governments of Gabon and Morocco.
He said that attacks on United Nations peacekeepers could constitute war crimes, and called on the authorities to investigate the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice.
Guterres reiterated his serious concern about the escalation of violence in the Central African Republic.
He called on the parties to immediately cease hostilities and engage in dialogue to advance the political process, protect fragile gains and realize the country’s aspirations for lasting peace.
Guterres pointed out that so far this year, nine United Nations peacekeepers have been killed in hostilities around the world.
This again shows that peacekeepers are in danger in order to carry out their task of protecting people and supporting the peace process, which is made even more difficult by the coronavirus pandemic.