Central African Republic prosecutes French national for espionage | Central African Republic News
Juan Remy Quiniolot was also charged with illegal possession of military weapons, group crimes, endangering national security and conspiracy.
Authorities in the Central African Republic (CAR) charged a French national with espionage and conspiracy nearly a month after he was arrested.
Juan Remy Quignolot was detained on May 10 after police said weapons, military uniforms and foreign banknotes were found in his residence in Bangui, the capital. The authorities accused him of helping and training rebel fighters in this conflict-torn country since 2013.
The Attorney General of the Central African Republic, Eric Didier Tambo, said on Wednesday that Quiniolot was accused of espionage, illegal possession of military and hunting weapons, criminal gangs, and endangering the country. Security and conspiracy.
He did not mention any country or organization that Quignolot allegedly worked for, but stated that any trial would take place within six months.
“In the case of compromising family safety, you are talking about lifelong forced labor,” he said, referring to potential punishment.
Quiniolot, 55, denied the allegations. The French Embassy in Bangui and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs did not immediately comment.
The allegations were announced two days after France suspended aid and military support to the Central African Republic because it said the government had failed to prevent “massive false propaganda campaigns” against its officials-a statement accusing Russia, which has been consistent with France. Competing for influence in the country.
The French government had previously provided 10 million euros ($12.18 million) in budget support to the Bangui authorities. It also has nearly 300 soldiers in the Central African Republic.
Photos circulated on social media on the day Quiniolot was arrested showed him with his hands tied behind his back, sitting on the steps in front of the weapons, ammunition, and military armory.
Two days later, France condemned the arrest and the photos were “obviously manipulated.”
It said it was using “disinformation networks” to “promote the clear interests of those accustomed to targeting the presence and actions of France” in the Central African Republic.
The Russian Valery Zakharov is a close adviser to the President of the Central African Republic, Faustin-Archange Touadéra. He specifically mentioned Quinniolo on Twitter. Special arrest news.
Russia has strengthened its military support for the Central African Republic, sending hundreds of military instructors to arm and train government forces to resist countless rebel movements in the country.
Since 2013, this gold and diamond producing country with a population of 4.7 million has experienced repeated incidents of violence by armed groups, including the civil war that ended in 2016 and election-related battles earlier this year.