C.Africa summit not aiming at 'regime change'

A summit of African leaders to discuss the president of the Central African Republic's future is not aiming at "regime change", the secretary-general of the body convening the talks said Wednesday.

"The summit was called because of a deterioration in the security situation," Allami Ahmat, secretary general of the 10-member Economic Community of Central African States (CEEAC) told AFP.

"It's not about regime change, nor changing the transition. It's about taking measures to restore peace and security in Central Africa," added Ahmat.

The aim is to ensure the "deplorable" situation in the country does not spiral out of the "control of the international community," he added.

No official agenda has been drawn up for the summit, called by Chadian President Idriss Deby Itno.

But French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told the Le Monde daily the leaders were "expected to take decisions" on President Michel Djotodia.

The Central African Republic descended into chaos after rebels from the Seleka movement installed Djotodia in power following a coup in March.

Djotodia disbanded the rebels but has been unable to keep them under control.

Instead, they have embarked on a spree of killing, rape and pillage, prompting Christians to form vigilante groups in response -- resulting in a deadly cycle of revenge attacks.

More than 1,000 people have been killed in the past month alone and nearly one million have been displaced since the coup.

In Bangui, the country's communications minister slapped down any talk of Djotodia's departure, saying it would only make the crisis worse.