Tag: Simuel

UN envoy to Central African Republic voices deep concern over renewed fighting

“There is a feeling of helplessness,” Margaret Vogt, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General told reporters in New York yesterday. “Without a strong response from the international community there is no future,” she said.She cited reports of widespread rape, looting, recruitment of children and risk of starvation as residents of villages hide in the bush out of fear of the violence and neglect to sow their crops.The CAR has a history of political instability and recurring armed conflict, which flared again in December 2013 when an alliance of rebel groups known collectively as ‘Séléka’ launched a series of attacks.The fighters took control of major towns and were advancing on the capital, Bangui, before agreeing to start peace talks under the auspices of the regional group known as the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS).A peace agreement was reached on 11 January, resulting in a ceasefire agreement and a shared governance arrangement in which opposition figures were given key posts, but the rebels claim the Government is failing to live up to its commitments, Ms. Vogt said.In the latest attacks, she said, the Séléka rebels have overrun a wide swathe of the country’s territory, and on Tuesday took the major town of Bangassou, the gateway to the south-east of the country and critical refuelling stop for humanitarian workers.The rebels were not engaged in making arrangements for humanitarian access, Ms. Vogt said, while atrocities were taking place. “At the best of times, the humanitarian situation is not good, but now the population is completely cut-off,” she added.She said it was critical to strengthen the capacity of the region to enforce agreements. In addition, the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office (BINUCA) was trying to assist mediators to get the parties back to the table. The African Union is engaged as well, she said, adding “We should all be more engaged.” Her strongest feelings concerned the civilian victims and their abusers, however, expressing anger over women being raped and children deprived of education. “Angry that people who… used to live decent lives – poor yes, but at least they have their lives – have to run into the bush just to escape these atrocities. It is not fair,” she told UN radio in a separate interview. BINUCA’s work to facilitate the implementation of the agreements is part of its mandate to help consolidate peace in the long-troubled nation, including support for security reform and reintegration of ex-combatants. read more

Mens Soccer Ohio State Buckeyes drown out the Penn State Nittany Lions

Freshman defender Theo Alexis (18) splits two defenders during the OSU vs. Penn State game on Tuesday. Credit: Ris Twigg | Assistant Photo EditorWhere there was plenty of rain Tuesday night at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, there was no shortage of offense as Ohio State (5-1-0, 2-0-0 Big Ten) defeated Penn State (1-2-2, 0-1-0 Big Ten), 3-0.The first goal came in the 49th minute from senior defender Niall Logue, his second of the season, and kicked off the scoring. Six minutes later, in the 55th minute, senior forward Nate Kohl buried his first of the season.The final tally was off the head of freshman forward Mitch Bergman in the 84th minute for his first career goal. Abdi Mohamed and Kevin Blackwood recorded assists.“We put it away in the last couple minutes there against a quality side in Penn State,” Bergman said. “Out of my mind right now, don’t know really what to think, just living up the moment right now.”The Buckeyes ended the game with 15 shot attempts, Bluem said the first goal opened up the Penn State defense and allowed for more opportunities.“It was a hard game when they were able to sit back defensively, they had a lot of numbers behind the ball,” Bluem said. This marks goalie Parker Siegfried’s fourth straight win and shutout. “It’s a team effort when you get a shutout, and we’ve been stressing that a lot with our team,” Bluem said. “Trying to make sure we’re organized defensively, we know what we want to do, where people are supposed to be then it comes down to individual effort. Are the guys on the field making that extra effort to do their job defensively, and if they are it makes it easier for us to get a shutout.”Despite having eight shots in the first half, the Buckeyes still ended the first half with a scoreless tie. Ohio State coach John Bluem thought the weather might have had something to do with it.“You know it’s funny, it didn’t rain till right when the game started, so we didn’t get used to the field being wet. So, I think both teams had a difficult time adjusting to the wet conditions. It was easier in the second half.”The Buckeyes next game will be in Piscataway, New Jersey, as they challenge in-conference opponent Rutgers at 1 p.m.Even though the Buckeyes have plenty of momentum, Bluem doesn’t believe they should be over-confident heading into Sunday.“We got to go back on the road again in the conference, it’s never easy to go on the road,” Bluem said. “Rutgers is a very good team, I watched them the other night. They’re very dangerous going forward, they’re going to cause us some problems. I think it’s going to be a wide-open game and a very difficult contest for us.” read more