US calls for transparency as Russians enter C.Africa
The United States on Wednesday called for transparency and an end to violence after Russia sent 300 military instructors to the Central African Republic ahead of the elections.
"Our position has always been that countries providing military or other aid should do so in a transparent and coordinated manner, and that such aid should support the desire of the people of the Central African Republic for good governance and stability," a Foreign Ministry spokesman said when asked about Russia's role.
The State Department said it "regrets" the mounting violence ahead of the weekend's elections, including the turbulent nation's brief seizure of fourth-largest city, Bambari.
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"We call on all parties to end hostilities and ensure that the people of Central Africa can exercise their right to participate in peaceful elections on December 27," the spokesman said.
Russia announced on Tuesday that it had dispatched the military teachers at the request of the government after an alleged coup attempt.
The Bangui government said the Rwandan armed forces continued to assist after three powerful rebel groups merged and marched into the capital.
Moscow has waged a diplomatic and financial offensive in the deeply concerned nation since 2018 in exchange for concessions made to Russian companies to harness the country's mineral wealth, particularly gold and diamonds.
While the United States has criticized Russia's role in conflicts in Ukraine, Libya and Syria, on Sunday it and Moscow made a declaration on the Central African Republic, which also included the former colonial power France.
The declaration, also signed by the United Nations, the African Union, the European Union and the World Bank, condemned the increasing violence in the Central African Republic and called for free and peaceful elections.
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