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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Rebels and parties: the impact of armed insurgency on representation in the Central African Republic
Author:Mehler, AndreasISNI
Periodical:Journal of Modern African Studies (ISSN 0022-278X)
Geographic term:Central African Republic
Subjects:political parties
political violence
conflict resolution
Abstract:This paper examines the relationship between violent conflict and the crisis of representation in the Central African Republic (CAR) by focusing on political parties and rebel movements. In particular, it analyses the declining importance of political parties in the country. The CAR can be considered an extreme example of the lack of viability of a State in general, and democracy in particular. However, the quality of elections has exceeded the average in the sub-region over a substantial time-span. Hopes for a democratic future only faded in recent years. The paper hypothesizes that both political parties and rebel movements are failing to adequately represent (ethnoregional) interests, but that parties are suffering more in the course of the enduring war and the peace process. Patterns of elite behaviour are presented as the main explanation for the resulting crisis of representation, with international actors' preference for inclusionary power-sharing deals seen as the main aggravating factor. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]