Central African Republic declares state of emergency

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BANGUI, CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC - JANUARY 04: Central African Republic security forces take measures around the party headquarters of current President Faustin Archange Touadera in Bangui, Central African Republic on January 04, 2021. The unofficial first results of the presidential and parliamentary elections in the Central African Republic last month are expected to be announced by the National Election Authority. (Photo by Nacer Talel/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
BANGUI, CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC – JANUARY 04: Central African Republic security forces take measures around the party headquarters of current President Faustin Archange Touadera in Bangui, Central African Republic on January 04, 2021. (Photo by Nacer Talel/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Central African Republic has declared a 15-day state of emergency throughout the country as a coalition of armed groups seeks to overthrow the newly re-elected President Faustin-Archange Touadera.

The spokesperson for the presidency, Albert Yaloke Mokpeme, made the announcement Thursday on national radio.

He said the state of emergency applies until February 4.

Last week, the rebels attacked just outside the capital, Bangui, but were repelled by U.N. peacekeeping forces. The U.N. mission has asked the U.N. Security Council for more troops.

The rebels are carrying out sporadic attacks in towns far from Bangui and on the RN3 highway, the crucial supply line linking the capital with neighboring Cameroon.

The coalition of armed groups is calling for Touadera’s resignation. He was re-elected in a contentious vote on December 27.

Militias claiming to represent ethnic or other groups control two-thirds of the country’s territory, raising questions about the government’s control of the vast, mineral-rich central African nation.

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