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News Roundup – 14 January 2013

January 14, 2013

Rebel Coalition in Central African Republic Agrees to a Short Cease-Fire

The M23 insurgent rebels’ executive secretary Rucogoza speaks during a press conference in Uganda’s capital Kampala

Rebel fighters, “mostly Islamists”, seize key Syrian air base

UN: Number of Syrians seeking refuge in Turkey continues to rise

Human Rights Watch: Syrian Army Using New Type of Cluster Munition

The situation in Mali 

News:

French airforce strike Mali rebel strongholds

Militants killed as French air strikes pound rebel camps

Malian rebels overrun garrison town and advance towards capital

In reaction to reports about civilians killed in air strikes in Konna Amnesty International urges parties to do the utmost to prevent civilian casualties.

Some background information:

  • UN Security Council Resolution 2085 (20 December 2012), which determined “that the situation in Mali constitutes a threat to international peace and security”, and authorising the deployment of an African-led International Support Mission in Mali (AFISMA), “which shall take all necessary measures […][e.g.] to support the Malian authorities in recovering the areas in the north of its territory under the control of terrorist, extremist and armed groups and in reducing the threat posed by terrorist organizations, including AQIM, MUJWA and associated extremist groups”. However, also emphasising “that the military planning will need to be further refined before the commencement of the offensive operation and requests that the Secretary-General, in close coordination with Mali , ECOWAS, the African Union, the neighbouring countries of Mali, other countries in the region and all other interested bilateral partners and international organizations, continue to support the planning and the preparations for the deployment of AFISMA, regularly inform the Council of the progress of the process, and requests that the Secretary-General also confirm in advance the Council’s satisfaction with the planned military offensive operation”.
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