Alarming deterioriation of the humanitarian situation in the Central African Republic (CAR)
(Bangui, 8 December 2013): The humanitarian community in CAR remains preoccupied by the alarming deterioration of the humanitarian situation in the country and in particular in the capital Bangui (Ombella Mpoko province) and Bossangoa (Ouham province). Since 5 December armed clashes between the ex-Seleka and the militia Anti-Balaka, 394 people have been killed and hundreds injured. The death toll is rising the majority of the population have no access to health facilities because of the insecurity and bodies are still collected daily in the affected zone.
The conflict has resulted in internal displacement of more than 52, 000 in Bangui alone, while roughly 40,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) are at the Catholic Mission in Bossangoa and up to 9,000 at Liberty School.
Since the beginning of the crisis in December 2012 more than 415,000 have been displaced internally and more than 68,000 new refugees are in neighboring countries of which 43,969 are in DRC. The humanitarian situation continues to worsen for the 4.6 million residents of which 2.6 million are in need of immediate assistance.
“The population has suffered enough; I call on all parties committing acts of violence to respect the protection of civilians and to assure their security including humanitarian organizations operating to alleviate the suffering of the people affected by the crisis. Unlimited and unhindered access should be guaranteed to allow organizations to deliver assistance to where there are needs in a neutral and impartial manner, “stated Rokhaya Daba Fall, acting Humanitarian Coordinator in CAR.
Despite the volatile and unpredictable security situation in Bangui, the heads of UN agencies visited affected areas to better understand the impact the crisis is having on civilians. During a visit to the community hospital, they found patients, of all ages and sex, lining the hallways waiting for care and every bed filled. Most of the injured suffered from gunshot wounds and from machetes. Care is principally being provided by Doctors Without Borders (MSF).
The delegation also visited the international airport of Mpoko where more than 10,000 IDPs have sought safety and are mainly men.
On 7 December the delegation also visited the Monastery of Boy Rabe as well as the central Mosque of Bangui where they encountered the religious leaders. From their testimony, the leaders emphasized that the root cause of this crisis is not religious as Christians and Muslims have always lived side by side peacefully.
In order to adequately respond to the multi sector needs of the IDPs the UN agencies and humanitarian partners have intensified operations to provide shelter, potable water, sanitation, food security and health to IDPs. The humanitarian community reinforces its civil-military coordination and support reconciliation efforts country-wide.
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit http://unocha.org/.