UN pulls DRC troops from Central Africa mission

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New York - The UN has asked the Democratic Republic of Congo to repatriate its peacekeepers from the Central African Republic after they failed to meet UN standards, a spokesman said Friday.

The Congolese troops serving in the MINUSCA force underwent two reviews by UN peacekeeping officials who found that they "only partially" met UN requirements "in terms of equipment, vetting and preparedness," said spokessperson Stephane Dujarric.

"In light of this result, the battalion from the Democratic Republic of the Congo currently deployed to MINUSCA will be repatriated without replacement," he said.

In August, allegations surfaced that three peacekeepers from the Democratic Republic of Congo had raped three young women in the town of Bambari, northeast of the capital Bangui.

There are 807 troops and 118 police from the DR Congo serving in the 10,000-strong MINUSCA force.

The Central African Republic is struggling to recover from sectarian violence that exploded after a 2013 coup, pitting mainly Muslim rebels against Christian militias.

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