Central African Republic strikes peace deal with 14 armed groups

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The United Nations said on Saturday that a peace deal had been struck between the Central African Republic government and 14 armed groups, raising hopes for elusive gun silence in the country.

The peace talks that begun last year are the first ever direct dialogue between the factions, aimed at ending years of conflict.

The agreement represents rare hope for the impoverished, landlocked nation where inter-religious and inter-communal fighting has continued since 2013.

The years of war have led to the deaths of thousands and the displacement of hundreds of thousands.

“This is a great day for Central African Republic and all its people,” said the AU commissioner for peace and security, Smail Chergui.