From 14 to 16 January 2017, the Chairman of the EU Military Committee, General Mikhail Kostarakos, visited Bangui, in Central African Republic (CAR), to attend a ceremony marking the handover of command at the EU Training Mission (EUTM).
Together with the Chairman, the ceremony was also attended by the Central African Republic Minister of Defense Mr Josef Yakete and other EU Military Officials.
During the event, outgoing Major General (French Army) Eric Hautecloque-Raysz transferred authority to Brigadier General (Belgian Army) Herman Ruys, as the new Mission Commander.
General Kostarakos to mark the occasion, praised General Hautecloque’s leadership emphasizing the role of the EU Training Mission in the reconstruction of effective and accountable CAR's armed forces capable of restoring the country's territorial integrity.
During his stay in the Central African Republic, he met with the Minister of Defence, Mr Josef Yakete who both shared their views on the current situation. In the same occasion, General Kostarakos confirmed EU's commitment to play an active role in helping the rebuilding of state institutions, security sector reform, in the framework of a comprehensive state- and peacebuilding agenda.
Further, the Chairman had a fruitful meeting with the Deputy Special Representative for the Central African Republic and Deputy Head of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), Diane Corner. The two officials highlighted the very positive cooperation between EU and UN.