MISCA soldiers arrest looters, dismantle illegal roadblocks


The African-led international support mission in the Central African Republic (CAR) (MISCA) caught members of an armed group looting a private villa behind the Fidel Obroux camp, close to the headquarters of the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Bangui.

Elements of the Burundian contingent of MISCA in charge of security for four of Bangui’s eight districts were alerted by neighbours and their prompt reaction put an end to the looting.

Eight armed men were arrested and three AK-47 assault rifles confiscated along with three full magazines.

Other Burundian soldiers stopped a taxi used to transport goods looted from the villa.

According to an African Union (AU) statement initial investigations showed the eight arrested were associated with or belonged to the Central African Armed Forces (FACA), comprised of soldiers who broke away from the CAR military.

All eight are now in the custody of the police criminal investigation component of MICSA and further investigations are underway to identify possible accomplices.

At the same time as the Burundians were putting a halt to looting, Congolese elements of MICSA, based in Nola, and tasked with escorting workers from a civilian mobile communications operator, came across and dismantled a number of illegal roadblocks set up by element of the anti-Balaka group. Twelve shotguns were confiscated.

Commenting on the successes General Jean-Marie Michel Mokoko, MISCA head, said the good work done by MISCA soldiers were further evidence the mission would “leave no stone unturned” in its efforts to protect civilians and support transition in the troubled country.