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Central African Republic

WORLD
March 25, 2013 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- The African Union on Monday suspended the Central African Republic and imposed sanctions after rebels ousted President Francois Bozize. South African President Jacob Zuma condemned the rebels as “bandits.” Zuma confirmed that at least 13 South African soldiers died in a nine-hour battle after they were attacked by some 2,000 rebels, and an additional 27 South Africans were wounded. One South African soldier is missing. "It is a sad moment for our country,” Zuma said, as controversy raged over the government's failure to pull out its forces.
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WORLD
March 24, 2013 | By Robyn Dixon
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - Rebels in the Central African Republic ousted President Francois Bozize on Sunday, forcing him to flee as they stormed the capital, seized the presidential palace and took control. Bozize left the capital early Sunday, AP reported, citing an advisor to the president. He went to neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo, according to news agency reports. The rebels entered the capital overnight, with heavy fighting reported around the presidential palace.
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.
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.
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