United Nations Security Council has extended the mandate for another 12 months of the peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic – known as Minusca.

Fourteen of the 15 council members voted to renew the mission, asking it to continue advancing reconciliation and durable peace through political, security and institutional means.

Minusca was also urged to protect human rights and assist in preparations for local elections in 2024 and 2025.

Russia abstained from the vote, after its representative said the resolution to extend the mandate contained some elements which did not reflect the current situation in the country.

Moscow maintains close ties with the Central African Republic, and the influence of people believed to be from the Wagner mercenary group, is perceptible in the government’s fight against local rebels.