News / Africa

Insecurity Hampers Aid Deliveries In CAR

A woman from the Central African Republic holds her baby in a refugee camp set up by the UNHCR in Nangungue, eastern Cameroon, April 12, 2013.
A woman from the Central African Republic holds her baby in a refugee camp set up by the UNHCR in Nangungue, eastern Cameroon, April 12, 2013.
Lisa Schlein

The United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) says instability in the Central African Republic (CAR) is limiting access to hundreds of thousands of internally displaced people and refugees in desperate need of assistance. The UNHCR says human rights violations are rampant and civilians live in constant fear.
 

The U.N. refugee agency calls the CAR one of the most dangerous places on Earth. It says three months after Seleka rebels ousted the government, the country remains gripped by insecurity and widespread lawlessness.
 

The UNHCR says it is extremely concerned about the situation of more than 200,000 internally displaced people and more than 20,000 refugees, mainly Congolese and Sudanese, who are unable to receive international assistance.
 

UNHCR spokesman Adrian Edwards says aid workers have had only limited access to parts of the capital, Bangui, as well as some places in the more remote central and northern parts of the country.
 

Over the past month, he says the UNHCR and other agencies have conducted assessment missions to Bangui and other areas generally off limits. He says the findings from colleagues are very troubling.
 

"At least 80 protection incidents have been reported in Bangui involving refugees, among them 10 deaths. There is looting. Refugees in camps and those in Bangui are in fear. Many are traumatized. Many have been the targets of attacks. In areas outside the city, it is more a situation where people effectively are living in the bush and they are coming to towns to get food - whatever they need during the daytime, but then are heading out to hide at night," said Edwards.
 

Edwards says staff members on these missions have received reports of gross violations of human rights. These include arbitrary arrest and illegal detention, torture, armed robbery, rape and abductions. He says armed groups have burnt down villages and houses in some areas.
 

He says the mission found schools have reopened in some areas, but remain closed in many others. He says people have limited access to health and basic services and mothers with newborn babies in many areas have no access to medical care.
 

"Violence against women, girls and boys has also reportedly increased. Humanitarian agencies, under the inter-agency response, have been giving assistance and counseling in some places. We are particularly concerned about the recent arrest of a former government counterpart of ours who worked in Bangui. We are currently seeking information about this person from the authorities, and assurances of his safety," he said.
 

Edwards says it is extremely difficult to work under these volatile conditions. Nonetheless, he says the UNHCR and its partners are coordinating efforts to assist refugees living in camps. He says they have been able to distribute food to some 11,000 refugees in several camps.
 

The UNHCR says people continue to flee insecurity in the CAR. It says the total number of refugees from CAR in the region now stands at over 220,000.

You May Like

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party More

Video One Year After Massacre, Iraq’s Yazidis a Broken People

Minority community still recovering from devastating assault by IS militants which spurred massive outrage More

‘Malvertisements’ Undermine Internet Trust

Hackers increasingly prey on users' trust of major websites to delivery malicious software More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs