Central African Republic

Bouar (Central African Republic) (AFP) At Bouar appeal court, presiding judge Aime Pascal Delimo twiddles his thumbs, surveys his empty office and then, with a sigh, closes his door to leave early. Delimo wields jurisdiction over territory in western Central African Republic (CAR) that is the size of Austria. Violent crime here is chronic. But he has no work. In one of the world’s poorest countries, the criminal justice system in Bouar and many other of CAR’s provincial towns has quite simply broken down. “Normally we would be finishing atRead More
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) The Central African Republic (CAR) is not in a “pre-genocide” state despite its problems, a United Nations expert said Wednesday, touching on comments by a former UN official that have sparked a storm. CAR “is not in a pre-genocide situation,” Adama Dieng, the UN’s special advisor for the prevention of genocide, said. Genocide “is a long process,” he explained. In August, the UN’s then-aid chief, Stephen O’Brien, said he was deeply worried about the mounting violence in CAR. He said he saw “the early warningRead More
Alindao (Central African Republic) (AFP) The head of a notorious rebel group in Central African Republic (CAR) has brushed off allegations of atrocities, portraying himself instead as the defender of a neglected and persecuted minority. In an interview with AFP in the town of Alindao, Ali Darassa hit back at accusations of abuse by rights watchdogs and said his group had acted to defend the Fula people, a largely nomadic group also called the Fulani. In September, Amnesty International blamed a wave of brutal attacks in Basse-Kotto province on Darassa’sRead More
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) Thirteen people have been killed in a town in Central African Republic, a local doctor said Sunday, as the toll from sectarian violence that has sparked fears of genocide continued to rise. The clashes took place in Bria, in the centre of the country 450 kilometres (280 miles) from the capital Bangui, between a majority Muslim rebel group and a predominantly Christian militia called the anti-Balaka. “Thirteen bodies were found on Saturday after violent fighting between self-defence forces and parts of Abdoulaye Hissene’s FPRC,” MichelRead More
Bangassou (Central African Republic) (AFP) Jonas Ngobo can still clearly see the bloodshed and devastation left when rebels attacked a Red Cross health centre in the Central African Republic where he worked. “I was among the dead and injured”, the 54-year-old Ngobo said. Six of his colleagues died in the violence in the southern town of Gambo, near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo, when members of a group called the Union for Peace in Central Africa (UPC) invaded the facility. The UPC is part of a Muslim-majorityRead More
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) Witness reports of killings in the Central African Republic, some targeting aid workers, piled up Tuesday as the UN said it saw “early signs of a genocide” in the conflict-wracked nation. At least 60 people have been killed in recent weeks in fighting between armed groups in Ngaoundaye and Batangafo in the north, Kaga-Bandoro in the centre and Alindao and Gambo to the south, witnesses have told AFP. The fighting is largely between groups on opposing sides of the brutal conflict between Muslim and ChristianRead More
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) An ambush killed a Moroccan peacekeeper and wounded three others on Sunday in the Central African Republic, the United Nations said, blaming pro-Christian militias for the violence. “A MINUSCA (peacekeeping mission) military convoy was targeted by anti-Balaka,” it said of the clash in the southern city of Bangassou. The country is struggling to emerge from a civil war that erupted in 2013 following the overthrow of former president Francois Bozize, a Christian, by Muslim rebels from the Seleka coalition. The coup led to the formationRead More
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) At least 15 people died in clashes between UN peacekeepers and former rebels in the centre of the chronically restive Central African Republic, a humanitarian source said Sunday. The violence broke out on Saturday in the market town of Kaga-Bandoro when rebels from the former Seleka movement of mainly Muslim fighters attacked the town “to settle an old score,” a source in MINUSCA, the UN mission which has some 12,000 troops in the country, told AFP. “They (the former Seleka rebels) were confronted by theRead More
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) Intense fighting in the Central African Republic killed at least 40 people Tuesday and injured dozens more, dashing hopes for stability in the strife-torn country the day after the signing of a ceasefire deal. The violence in the central town of Bria was between members of Christian ‘anti-balaka’ militias and fighters formerly belonging to a coalition of Muslim-majority rebel groups called the Seleka, aid and security sources said. The clashes erupted after the CAR government and rebel groups agreed to an immediate ceasefire Monday, aRead More
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) The death toll from clashes in Central African Republic has surged to around 100, local officials said Wednesday of violence that erupted hours after the government signed a truce with rebel groups. The bloodshed, which left dozens more injured, dashed hopes of an end to the simmering sectarian violence which has blighted the country since 2013, pitting Christian anti-Balaka militias against mainly Muslim ex-Seleka rebels. Shooting erupted early on Tuesday in the central town of Bria and by midnight (2300 GMT) security sources and NGOsRead More