Bangui / AFP
France will end its military intervention in the Central African Republic this year as it has achieved its objectives of restoring security to the country after three years of communal violence, the French defence minister said Wednesday.
“I can confirm to you the end of Operation Sangaris during the course of 2016,” Jean-Yves Le Drian said in the capital Bangui.
France launched the mission in December 2013 as thousands were dying in ethnic violence between Christians and Muslims.
At the time, “the country was in the throes of civil war, torn by religious tensions, plagued by chaos, on the brink of pre-genocidal scenarios,” Le Drian said. “In the space of two years, the Sangaris force restored calm and prevented the unacceptable. “Of course everything is not resolved but we can finally see the country emerging from a long period of trouble and uncertainty”, he said, speaking before French soldiers stationed at the M’Poko airport.