1- Evolution of needs over the last six months and key humanitarian consequences (September 2019 - February 2020)
CAR continues to face a serious protection crisis, with unabated violations of human rights and international humanitarian law despite the signature of the Political Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation on 6 February 2019. Consequently, civilians continue to pay the highest price of uninterrupted violence. Notwithstanding some initial progress made on the political dialogue, the population has yet to see tangible peace and protection dividends, as some two million people, or 60 per cent of the population in CAR, are still in need of protection.
The security situation has further deteriorated in some locations. Between September 2019 and February 2020, armed conflicts occurred in Vakaga (Birao), Haute-Kotto (Bria), Basse Kotto (Alindao and Mingala), Mbomou (Nzako) and in Bangui’s third district (PK5) causing onset and multiple displacement of population in urgent need of multi-sectorial assistance. In the same reporting period, the UNICEF/Rapid Response Mechanism recorded 33 new alerts, with 49 per cent of them due to violence. In addition to the 12 prefectures that had already issued alerts earlier this year, the prefectures of Haute-Kotto, Mamberei-Kadei and Lobaye were also affected.
Since October 2019, violence has resumed or continued in several areas of the country.
According to the latest 2P-tool analysis on perception of protection priorities (see illustration below), between October 2019 and February 2020, the situation has deteriorated in Bria, Birao, Alindao, Ndélé and Bangui’s third district. Paoua, Ngaoundaye, Batangafo, Kaga Bandoro, Mbres, Bambari and Ippy continue to be high priority areas in terms of protection concerns. Yalinga and Satéma are no longer blind spots, following humanitarian missions in these two hard-to-reach areas; which were possible thanks to the increased UNHAS helicopter capacity.
One in four Central Africans has been forced to seek refuge either internally or in neighboring countries due to insecurity and violence. The number of IDPs saw a 15 per cent increase between September and October 2019 only, from 600,000 to 693,000. As of 31 January 2020, 67 per cent of the 682,000 IDPs are living in host families and the rest in 91 sites (77 official IDP sites and 14 informal settlements) across the country. Only 66 per cent of sites have a site manager. A major threat to the over 214,000 IDPs living on sites is the systematic violation of the civilian character of IDP sites, due to the widespread infiltration of weapons and armed elements (Commission Mouvement de Population - CMP December 2020).
In the last quarter of 2019, 29,249 IDPs and 3,168 Central African refugees returned to their homes, a decreasing number compared to the movement registered following the Political Agreement for Peace and Reconciliation in February. Return areas are still affected by ongoing violence, such as in Vakaga, Mboumou, Ouham Pendé, Ouham (Protection Cluster, January 2020). Almost one returnee out of two fears for the security of the children (46 per cent) and the adults (47 per cent) of the household (Multisectoral Need Assessment - MSNA, 2019) and their living conditions are often tougher than the displaced themselves. For instance, out the 197 hard-to-reach localities that reported the presence of returnees in December 2019, 7 per cent indicated that returnees had no shelter at all and 43 per cent emergency shelters only (Hard to reach, REACH, December 2019).
In return areas, mainly due to exclusion practices, female heads of households face more obstacles to gain access to employment as well as land ownership. In addition, the representation in community structures remains skewed towards men.
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
- To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.