The civil war in the Central African Republic looks to be over, at least for the time being, as an agreement has been signed between rebels and the government which will create a unity government and set the stage for new parliamentary elections within 12 months.
The exact terms of the deal, negotiated in Gabon, were not disclosed, but they will halt the rebel offensive which has brought fighters to the brink of the capital city of Bangui, which had the African Union threatening to invade to save military ruler Brigadier General Francois Bozizé
Exactly what this will mean for the Bozizé regime is yet to be seen, but Bozizé himself insisted that he will retain his hold on power through at least 2016, suggesting there wasn’t any specific deal on early presidential elections.
The rebellion was an extension of the rebellions that cropped up after the 2003 coup that brought Bozizé to power, and the rebels insisted that it was restarted because past deals had not been honored. Rebels greeted the new deal with cautious optimism, saying they hoped the regime would follow through with the new pact.
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