Central African Republic Rebels: OK, We'll Talk
Halt advance on Bangui
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Jan 2, 2013 9:04 AM CST
In this frame grab taken from APTN footage from Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012, President Francois Bozize addresses crowds, in Bangui, Central African Republic.   (AP Photo/APTN)

(Newser) – Rebels in the poverty-stricken Central African Republic have been advancing on the capital for three weeks, but today they agreed to halt and begin peace talks, Reuters reports. They had come within striking distance of Bangui, causing the US to close its embassy in the country and evacuate its citizens. The rebels accuse President Francois Bozize of doing an about-face on a peace deal, and say they may still insist he leave office as part of their peace terms. But Bozize says that the one non-negotiable in the talks is an early end to his term, which runs to 2016, reports the AP. (It notes that the US says his 2011 election win was "widely viewed as severely flawed.")

A spokesperson for rebel group Seleka says it wants "a political solution" rather than a clash with regional troops. And "one solution could be a political transition that excludes Bozize," he adds. Talks could begin Jan. 10, according to sources. The US, the EU, and France have been calling for negotiations, and members of the central African regional bloc ECCAS sent hundreds of troops last month to bolster the army.

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lilia.s
Mar 24, 2013 1:05 PM CDT
Now that Bozize has fled the CAR, I wonder how many millions or billions he managed to steal from a country rich with minerals, but where most of the population is starving. How else would he be willing and able to travel with his family worldwide after being "deposed"? It seems that all of the people who take over countries, especially in Africa, but also worldwide, finally end up being run out by another military coup, and are found to have billions in Swiss bank accounts, while their citizens are left starving. When is the world at large going to recognize these financial "rapes", investigate how much was legally earned, and strip the foreign bank accounts to return the money to the rightful owners, the poor citizens of the countries? Look at Mugabe, he claims that his family's riches are legally earned, but that's dubious, when he "gave" key business and financial positions to his family members and political cronies. And it's still going on, while other countries send aid to try to help his impoverished citizens, which he then also manages to steal by diverting material, medical, and financial aid...
Kent
Jan 2, 2013 11:02 AM CST
Africa, nirvana of the world. we should all look to the likes of mugabe when running a government. That clown took a productive country that produced enough food to have exports, down to a starving nation with the blacks hanging whites and stealing their farms and then not doing any farming. That is okay, kind of like here with eric von holder minister of justice and gun sales refusing to prosecute black on white crime.......