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Central African Republic

WORLD
January 11, 2013 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG - Opposition forces in the Central African Republic who took control of a large swath of the country in recent weeks have succeeded in forcing President Francois Bozize's government to share power, officials said Friday. In a deal averting a battle for control of Bangui, the capital, Bozize and the opposition agreed to a coalition government during peace talks in Libreville, the Gabon capital. Chad's foreign minister, Moussa Faki Mahamat, who attended the talks, released a statement announcing the peace agreement.
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WORLD
December 31, 2012 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- The African Union on Monday warned rebels who are threatening to oust the Central African Republic government that they would face isolation in Africa, suspension from the organization and sanctions if they do so. Nkosana Dlamini-Zuma, commission chairwoman of the AU, warned the coalition of rebels called Seleka, or the Alliance, that other African nations would not tolerate the removal of a government by force....
WORLD
December 28, 2012 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - U.S. diplomats evacuated from the capital of the Central African Republic on Friday, the State Department reported, after a coalition of rebel groups swept across the country in recent days, seizing towns and diamond mining areas and threatening to oust the government. Residents of Bangui also fled by car, or by boat across the Ubangi River to the Democratic Republic of Congo, while others scoured markets stocking up on food in case war comes to the capital, according to news agencies.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 30, 2012 | By Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
"The Ambassador" will make your head spin. Part muckraking nonfiction film, part performance piece, it is a nervy documentary guaranteed, depending on who you are, to enlighten, disturb or offend. Which is what you might expect from a man who describes his work as "a strange mix of Borat and the Economist. " That would be Danish documentary filmmaker Mads Brügger, whose previous film, "The Red Chapel," took his particular brand of political theater of the absurd to North Korea. Now Brügger is headed off to the Central African Republic, a just-about-failed state he describes, in a typical bit of scathing voice-over, as "'Jurassic Park' for those who long for Africa of the 1970s.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 29, 2012 | By Mark Olsen, Los Angeles Times
Imagine the heart of gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson beating within the body of comedian Sacha Baron Cohen, and you'll have a sense of Danish documentarian Mads Brügger. In his 2009 film, "The Red Chapel," he invented a cross-cultural comedy troupe as subterfuge to enter North Korea and examine conditions there. In his latest, "The Ambassador," opening Friday in Los Angeles, Brügger travels to Liberia and the Central African Republic, where, posing as a businessman with a penchant for safari jackets and riding boots, he exposes widespread government corruption and complicity in diamond smuggling.
WORLD
October 25, 2011 | By Paul Richter, Los Angeles Times
Obama administration officials Tuesday sought to convince skeptical members of Congress that 100 U.S. military advisors being sent to central Africa will spend only a few months in the region helping to crush a notorious guerrilla group. Senior Pentagon and State Department officials said they did not plan to expand the role or the number of troops being sent to advise African forces battling the Lord's Resistance Army, a small but vicious militia that has terrorized villages and towns in northern Uganda and nearby countries for more than two decades.
WORLD
January 15, 2010 | By Robyn Dixon, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
Reporting from Johannesburg — Former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, deposed and exiled in a 2004 coup, offered today to return to Haiti, saying he could not wait to go home and rebuild his country after Tuesday's devastating earthquake. In a rare public statement, he said he felt a profound need to go to try to save the lives of victims awaiting rescue. Aristide said supporters around the world had promised a plane to fly him in, with emergency relief. Yet he offered no details on how he planned to return.
WORLD
September 10, 2009 | Times Wire Reports
An army spokesman said Ugandan forces have rescued 100 kidnapped children and young adults during an operation against a brutal rebel group in neighboring Central African Republic. Lt. Col. Felix Kulaigye said Ugandan forces also captured a senior commander of the Lord's Resistance Army. Kulaigye said troops had killed four of the group's junior commanders since entering the country two weeks ago. The rebels originated in northern Uganda and have fought the government for 20 years.
WORLD
September 12, 2008 | From Times Wire Reports
A former mechanic with a U.N. peacekeeping mission was convicted of raping African teenagers during his posting in the Central African Republic and Congo. A Paris court sentenced Didier Bourguet, 44, to nine years in prison for about 20 rapes committed between 1998 and 2004, when he worked as a civilian United Nations employee. State prosecutor Pierre Kramer lashed out at the defense team for arguing that the girls, ages 12 through 18, had consented. A U.N. finding in 2005 that peacekeepers in Congo had sex with women and girls, often in exchange for food or a little money, led to a new code of conduct.
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