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US envoy Power: More troops needed in Central African Republic after exit of Chadian forces

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations says there's more urgency than ever to increase the number of troops on the ground in Central African Republic.

Samantha Power, visiting Central African Republic on Wednesday, said that more soldiers and police are needed after neighboring Chad withdrew its 850 troops.

Power's visit to Bangui comes on the eve of a U.N. vote to transform an African peacekeeping force into a United Nations peacekeeping mission.

The measure is expected to be approved although experts say the U.N. force will not become functional until September.

Power said the international community must support the African and French peacekeeping forces already on the ground and fill in the gaps left by the Chadian troops, who were withdrawn after they were blamed for civilian deaths.