19 March 2015 by defenceWeb
The European Union on 16 March launched a military advisory mission in the Central African Republic (EUMAM RCA), after its establishment on 19 January. The mission supports the Central African authorities in preparing the reform of the security sector with respect to the armed forces of the Central African Republic.
EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, said: "The EU continues its comprehensive support for stability and security in the Central African Republic. EU experts will now support preparations for security sector reform. This will help the Central Africa Republic turn the corner after this security crisis."
In close cooperation with the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), this mission will play a critical role in strengthening the security sector. Concurrently, EUMAM RCA will advise the military authorities of the Central African Republic (CAR) on the reforms necessary to transform the CAR armed forces into a professional, democratically controlled and ethnically representative army, the EU said. EUMAM RCA will also support the MINUSCA in achieving its mandate in the area of security sector reform and the vetting process.
EUMAM RCA is located in the country's capital Bangui. Brigadier General Dominique Laugel from France has been appointed EU Mission Commander for a team of up to 60 staff. The common costs of the operation are estimated at €7.9 million for 12 months.
EUMAM RCA takes over from EUFOR RCA, which completed its mission in Bangui on March 15 after 11 months of operations. Initially agreed for a period of 6 months after achieving full operational capability of the force, the mandate of EUFOR RCA actually lasted 9 months, after the Central African authorities and the United Nations requested an extension, deploying on the ground about 750 soldiers from 14 European Countries.
The EU said that during the last 11 months, the level of security in Bangui has significantly improved with internally displaced persons going back to their homes while the first refugees are beginning to return to Central African Republic.