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CAR to hold elections on December 13

29 October 2015, 07:07

Bangui - Central African Republic will hold presidential and parliamentary elections on December 13, the electoral commission said on Wednesday, reviving delayed efforts to restore democracy in a country rocked by fighting since 2013.

The polls were initially to have been held on October 18 but were postponed, in part due to violence in the capital.

A run-off presidential vote will be held on January 24 if needed, state radio said.

The elections are intended to usher in a government with authority to restore order in one of Africa's most turbulent states and pave the way for the departure of UN and French peacekeepers.

Also Read: Hostages killed in Central African Republic

Central African Republic was plunged into turmoil in 2013 when Muslim rebels from an umbrella group called Seleka seized power in the majority-Christian country.

Seleka handed power to a transitional government in 2014 under international pressure but months of violence followed, killing thousands and resulting in the effective partition of the country.

The murder of a Muslim man in the capital in late September triggered inter-communal violence that killed at least 40 people, forced 40 000 to flee and destroyed homes, shops and humanitarian offices.

In August a transitional council adopted a new constitution, which will be put to a referendum one week before the elections, the radio said. All the main political groups say they support it so it is likely to be adopted.

- Reuters


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