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Vol 52 No 13

Published 24th June 2011

Central African Republic

The devil you know

The European Union backs a fraudulently elected President because it fears the consequences of his fall

President François Bozizé emerged strengthened from an aid-pledging conference in Brussels on 16-17 June when European Union states promised more than 400 billion CFA francs (US$870 million) for 2011-14. This follows aid pledges of some CFA300 bn. in 2007. Much more welcome to Bozizé, however, was the tact shown by European officials who declined to repeat their condemnation of the electoral rigging that saw him return to office after the January and March elections. Then, with the support of his superiors, the EU Ambassador to the Central African Republic, Guy Samzung, said: ‘There has been a democratic regression, compared to the 2005 elections.’ This month, EU officials merely mused that in fragile states elections are often imperfect.

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