Blind violence against civilians in Batangafo and Bambari
Bangui, 1 November 2018 – The Humanitarian Coordinator in the Central African Republic, Najat Rochdi, condemns with the utmost energy the renewal of violence in Bambari and Batangafo towns, which has caused several casualties and forced displacement. It has also endangered the safety of humanitarian personnel on the ground.
On two occasions, on 31 October and 1 November, the IDP site of Batangafo town, in the Ouham prefecture, was set on fire. The gunshots and the fire have left over 27,000 people in complete disarray; those people have been displaced again and have lost everything. Hundreds of houses, latrines and showers have been destroyed. The market and four Temporary Spaces for Learning and Child Protection (ETAPE), which used to allow displaced children to continue schooling and other educational activities, have also been burnt down.
Recently in Bambari town, violence has also caused the displacement of children, men and women who are in dire precarious conditions. “We must put an end to this blind violence against the more vulnerable. I call on all parties to respect their obligations under international humanitarian law and to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure”, declared Najat Rochdi.
The high level of tension in these two cities and their surrounding areas has led to the temporary suspension of lifesaving humanitarian activities, with the exception of emergency health services.
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