The United States welcomes the selection of Catherine Samba-Panza as Transitional President in the Central African Republic (C.A.R.). As C.A.R.'s first woman head of state since the country's independence, and with her special background in human rights work and mediation, she has a unique opportunity to advance the political transition process, bring all the parties together to end the violence, and move her country toward elections not later than February 2015.
We also commend the Transitional National Council for conducting the selection process for the new C.A.R. Transitional President in a deliberate, open, and transparent manner that ensured the airing of a full range of views from C.A.R.'s civil society.
The United States has been deeply engaged in the work to help pull C.A.R. back from the brink, including the pivotal visits of Ambassador Power and Assistant Secretary Thomas-Greenfield less than a month ago. The United States, along with regional leaders of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), the African Union, and other members of the international community, hopes to support President Samba-Panza and call on the people of C.A.R. to work constructively with her, participate in the political process, and avoid any resurgence in violence.