What is the Russian word for central

300 Russian military advisers to the Central African Republic

Before the presidential and parliamentary elections planned for Sunday in the Central African Republic, Russia said it had sent 300 additional military instructors to the country. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow announced that they had "responded immediately" to a request from the government in Bangui. The opposition and armed groups, with the support of external forces, tried to destabilize the situation. In addition to Russia, Rwanda has also sent military personnel.

The Russian instructors are supposed to train the "military personnel of the national army" of the Central African Republic. The basis is an existing cooperation agreement. The UN Security Council Committee was informed about the deployment, it said in Moscow. "We call on all constructive political forces in the Central African Republic to dialogue and peaceful resolution of disputes in connection with the preparation for the general elections," said a statement from the Moscow Ministry. On Monday, Russia denied the government in Bangui that hundreds of Russian soldiers had been transferred to the Central African Republic.

Proven cooperation: Presidents Faustin Archange Touadéra and Vladimir Putin at a meeting in Sochi in 2019

The deployment of the Russian military follows a verbal attack by the Bangui government against ex-head of state François Bozizé. He is accused of planning a coup with rebels in the run-up to the elections on Sunday. Bozizé denies this allegation.

Rebel advance on the city of Bambari

According to government and United Nations officials, a rebel group managed to occupy the important city of Bambari. Mayor Abel Matchipata told a reporter for the AFP news agency that the country's fourth largest city is under the control of armed groups. "There was no violence against residents." According to the United Nations, there had previously been a two-hour gun battle with blue helmet soldiers and soldiers from the army. The rebel groups accuse President Faustin Archange Touadéra of wanting to manipulate the elections.

The Christian President Bozizé was overthrown in 2013 by the predominantly Muslim rebel group the Séléka. Thousands of people were killed in the ensuing fighting between militias belonging to the Christian majority and the Muslim minority. According to the UN Refugee Agency, around 1.3 million Central Africans fled the fighting. Armed groups control two thirds of the country. The resource-rich but very poor country has been plagued by conflicts and upheavals for years.

Bozizé returned from exile a year ago. He wanted to compete against Touadéra in the election on Sunday and was considered to be its main competitor. The constitutional court forbade his candidacy. Bozizé - who came to power in a 2003 coup - is subject to UN sanctions, among other things for allegedly supporting militias.

kle / ehl (afp, ape, dpa, DW)