News / Africa

UNHCR Says More CAR Refugees Entering Cameroon

TEXT SIZE - +

The United Nations refugee agency says an increasing number of people from the Central African Republic are seeking refuge in eastern Cameroon.

Ethnic Mbororo refugees from the Central African Republic started crossing the border into Cameroon five years ago as rebels stole their cattle and kidnapped women and children for ransom.

More than 80,000 refugees now live in Cameroon, many in remote settlements more than 350 kilometers east of the capital, Yaounde. And a recent census by the U.N. refugee agency says their numbers are continuing to grow.

High Commissioner Antonio Guterres says it is a tragedy that largely goes unnoticed, and it is time the international community face up to its responsibilities to help not only the refugees but the local communities that have taken them in and are now facing shortages of classroom space and clean water.

"The host communities have meager resources," said Antonio Guterres. "They share those resources with the refugees. They have their own development problems that needs to receive much stronger solidarity from the international community."

Rebels in the Central African Republic have been fighting the government of President Francois Bozize since shortly after he toppled President Ange Felix Patasse in 2003. The United Nations says that violence has displaced more than 300,000 people.

Presidential elections are scheduled for next month. But opposition candidates, including former president Patasse, want that poll delayed because they say voter registration is incomplete and the failure to disarm rebels in the north leaves the country unprepared for a vote.

President Bozize says the election will not be delayed. After calling for elections for years, he says his political opponents are now afraid to face him before the voters.

With a continuing rebellion and political uncertainty about the vote, Guterres says it does not appear that Central African Refugees in Cameroon will be going home anytime soon.

"Peace is the key element that allows for people to be able to go back home," said Guterres. "The best solution for a refugee crisis is always to solve the political problems that allow for refugees to be able to go back home voluntarily in safety and dignity."

With Cameroon's relative peace and economic and political stability, Guterres says the country will likely remain a magnet for refugees for years to come. Along with refugees from the Central African Republic, Cameroon is also sheltering refugees from Chad, Nigeria, Liberia, Rwanda, and Burundi.  

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 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.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid