Nine humanitarian organizations looted in the centre of Central African Republic
The Central African Republic is and remains one of the most dangerous countries in the world for humanitarian operations. Acts of violence and looting of humanitarian organizations as well aggressions against humanitarian workers have systematically taken place during the latest waves of violence affecting parts of the country. During May 2018, nine premises of humanitarian organizations have been looted, as well as the National Refugee Commission (CNR) in Bambari town alone. Since January 2018, four humanitarian staff have lost their lives while performing their mission.
The Humanitarian Coordinator for Central African Republic, Ms. Najat Rochdi, who is currently in Geneva to meet donors and mobilized resources "strongly deplored these cowardly and repeated attacks, which hamper our ability to raise funds". She noted that "such violent acts not only violate international law but penalize the vulnerable populations affected by violence".
Humanitarian workers are forced to temporarily suspend or limit their activities because of such acts, and "once again it is the populations weakened by chronic violence and multiple displacements that suffer the most" said Ms. Rochdi. “When stocks of medicines or food are looted and humanitarian convoys attacked, let’s remind that thousands of people are at risk of dying or suffering from hunger or disease," she added.
The Prefecture of Bambari has more than 37,000 internally displaced people in 9 sites. Humanitarian actors’ daily action include health care, nutritional support to children suffering from acute or severe malnutrition, food rations and psycho-social support for women who are victims of gender-based violence. Humanitarians also ensure the provision of safe drinking water not only to internally displaced people but to host communities as well.
The resurgence of violence comes at a time when the humanitarian community is making every effort to raise the level of funding for the Humanitarian Response Plan. In the first half of 2018, only $ 82.4 million (or 16 percent) were raised out of the $ 515.6 million urgently required to help 1.9 million people in need.